HyperSolar today commented that it is strongly encouraged by recent commitments of Fortune 500 companies to use hydrogen fuel cells for a number of applications.

Last week, Walmart, the world’s biggest retailer announced it had ordered an additional 1,738 GenDrive cells from Plug Power to be used in lift trucks at their six North American distribution centers.

In January of this year, both Sprint and FedEx announced they were increasing their use of fuel cell technology. Sprint said it would begin deploying hydrogen fuel cell technology as backup power to rooftop network sites replacing diesel generators. FedEx placed an order with Plug Power for Fuel Cell Extenders to increase the range of their fleet of electric delivery trucks.

Tim Young, CEO of HyperSolar, commented, “With our commitment to develop a method for onsite renewable hydrogen production, we are encouraged by the growing demand for hydrogen production infrastructure. Toyota, Hyundai, and Honda have led the way with recent announcements about new fuel cell cars. Many big companies, including Walmart, are now using fuel cells to power warehouse lift trucks. We believe that Sprint’s commitment to deploy fuel cells as a source of backup power is just the very small tip of the very large iceberg for this type of application.”

“The missing link for commercial success is an economical source of renewable hydrogen,” continued Mr. Young. “Today the feedstock to produce hydrogen for all these commercial applications is natural gas. While natural gas is plentiful, the supply is not infinite and it certainly isn’t renewable. Also, there is a distribution problem that must be solved. At HyperSolar, our goal is to use our proprietary technology to produce renewable hydrogen at or near the point of distribution or deployment.”

HyperSolar’s research is centered on developing a low-cost and submersible hydrogen production particle that can split water molecules under the sun, emulating the core functions of photosynthesis. Each particle is a complete hydrogen generator that contains a novel high voltage solar cell bonded to chemical catalysts by a proprietary encapsulation coating. A video of an early proof-of-concept prototype can be viewed at http://hypersolar.com/application.php. HyperSolar recently extended its sponsored research agreement with UCSB to further the development.