The Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District (MTD) now boasts a brand-new on-site hydrogen production station, powered by nearly 5,500 solar panels, to fuel its 60-foot hydrogen fuel cell buses that serve the region.

Unveiled on Thursday (Oct 14), the facility is a result of a longstanding partnership between Philadelphia-based PDC Machines and Ivys Energy Solutions, which provided the refuelling technology to MTD. 

Buses refuelled at the site will serve the cities of Champaign, Urbana, Savoy, as well as the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

On the new facility, Karl Gnadt, Managing Director and CEO of MTD, said, “MTD has always been forward thinking, and this project puts MTD right out on the cutting edge. We invite members of the public and the industries of transportation and energy to learn about our project and celebrate this advancement in climate resiliency.”

Kareem Afzal, CEO of PDC Machines, added, “Bringing the promise of hydrogen energy to a student population of over 50,000 is a thrilling opportunity, and we’re proud that PDC is the company to do it.

“Helping to decarbonise public transit, not just replacing single family vehicles, is one of the strongest ways to prove the viability of green hydrogen to the general public. It’s important to have these public-facing projects, even more so with a large population of students who might take professional interest and bring their talents to bear in the future as we address the continuing climate crisis.”