The Federal Transit Administration (FTA), an agency of the Department of Transportation, will grant $8 million in awards to CALSTART, a non-profit organization that promotes the national clean transportation technology industry, for four separate projects that are aimed at making zero emission, low carbon fuel cell buses more affordable and competitive with diesel buses.

CALSTART partnered with the FTA in 2006 during the formation of the National Fuel Cell Bus Program. Over the period of the program, fuel cell life times (in transit operations) have more than doubled while costs have declined by 50 percent, according to CALSTART.

According to CALSTART, the four awards to CALSTART provided below are:

  • American Fuel Cell Bus – $2,732,147: builds a next-generation fuel cell bus with latest fuel cell technology and demonstrates in transit service in greater Cleveland area for two years.. Project partners and suppliers are Greater Cleveland Transit Authority, Cleveland, Ohio; ElDorado National, Riverside, California; BAE Systems, Endicott, New York; and Ballard Power Systems, Lowell, Massachusetts.
  • Battery-Dominant Fuel Cell Hybrid Bus – $4,251,307: develops and demonstrates a battery-dominant fuel cell bus based on a commercial hybrid platform, and smaller, less expensive fuel cells. Project partners and suppliers are SunLine Transit Agency, Thousand Palms, California; ElDorado National, Riverside, California; and BAE Systems, Endicott, New York.
  • Fuel Cell Bus Altoona Testing – $554,316: comprehensive testing of an existing fuel cell bus, essential for commercialization of fuel cell electric buses. This project will help develop consistent procedures and guidelines for testing all fuel cell buses. The project partner is National Bus Testing Facility, Altoona, Pennsylvania.
  • Best Practices in Hydrogen Fueling and Maintenance Facilities – $189,999: develops best practices guide for transit agencies in hydrogen fueling and maintenance facilities.