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Chemours and the University of Delaware Unveil the Center for Clean Hydrogen

  • The Center is part of the Clean Hydrogen Partnership, a public-private partnership between the U.S. Dept. of Defense, the University of Delaware, Chemours, Plug, and NREL
  • The partnership will work to solve the challenges of creating low-cost clean hydrogen and efficient hydrogen energy conversion
  • The Center for Clean Hydrogen is a first-of-its-kind facility that enables real-world testing of new components at scale

The Chemours Company, a global chemistry company, today celebrated the announcement of the Clean Hydrogen Partnership co-developed with the University of Delaware, and the unveiling of the Center for Clean Hydrogen. The Clean Hydrogen Partnership (CHP) is an innovative public-private collaboration that brings the U.S. Department of Defense, the University of Delaware, Chemours, Plug, and the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) together to solve the challenges of producing clean hydrogen at low cost and converting the hydrogen to energy in an efficient way. Senators Tom Carper (Del.), Chris Coons (Del.), Chuck Schumer (N.Y.), Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester (Del.), and Congressman Paul Tonko (N.Y.) were instrumental in advocating for the establishment of the CHP and the Center for Clean Hydrogen.

Alongside U.S. Senators Carper (Del.), Coons (Del.), and Congresswoman Blunt Rochester (Del.), Chemours and the University of Delaware unveiled the Center for Clean Hydrogen. Pictured left to right: University of Delaware Provost Laura Carlson; Ron Schoon, executive manager, Partnership Development at the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL); U.S. Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester; U.S. Sen. Tom Carper; U.S. Sen. Chris Coons; Yushan Yan, director of the Center for Clean Hydrogen; Mark Newman, President and CEO, Chemours; Denise Dignam, President Advanced Performance Materials, Chemours; Kelvin Lee, UD interim vice president for research, scholarship and innovation; and Levi Thompson, UD dean of engineering. (Photo: Business Wire)

“Our planet is on fire, and if we want to combat the existential threat of climate change and position our economy for the future, we need to ensure that we are creating a nurturing environment for clean energy production,” said Senator Carper, chair of the Environment and Public Works Committee. “Clean hydrogen has a critical role to play in strengthening our country’s industrial sector and moving us closer to net-zero emissions by 2050. I am proud to help secure the funding for this partnership. Together, we can combat the biggest threat to our society today and grow our economy at the same time.”

“Today’s Center for Clean Hydrogen announcement is just one example of the collaboration between industry, academia, and the federal government that makes the First State a world leader in clean energy innovation,” said Senator Coons.“As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I was thrilled to secure this funding to support critical research into clean hydrogen technologies that will help us reduce emissions from our manufacturing and transportation sectors and combat climate change. I’m grateful to the University of Delaware and Chemours for their leadership that will create manufacturing jobs right here in Delaware, and I will continue to fight alongside Senator Carper and Representative Blunt Rochester for federal funding to grow these types of partnerships.”

“Securing a clean energy future, utilizing sources such as hydrogen, creates a stronger workforce, a more robust and resilient economy, and a better and brighter future for our public health,” said Rep. Blunt Rochester. “The Center for Clean Hydrogen, a remarkable partnership between the University of Delaware, Chemours, and NREL, will be a hub for the research, development, and innovation needed to help us secure that clean energy future. As a member of the House Energy subcommittee and the founder and co-chair of the bipartisan Future of Work Caucus, I know that we cannot secure that future without ensuring we are preparing the workforce of the future and creating good-paying jobs. The Center for Clean Hydrogen will help us do both. I’m proud to join all the partners, including Senators Carper and Coons, to support the Center for Clean Hydrogen so that we can realize a safer, cleaner future for all.”

The CHP will drive research focused on lowering the cost and acceleration of green hydrogen and fuel cells by enabling the discovery of innovative materials, stack designs, and manufacturing improvements. The research results will be tested in the Center for Clean Hydrogen, a first-of-its-kind research facility that enables real-world testing of new components at scale located at the University of Delaware. The Center’s ability to test at scale will accelerate the adoption of new materials that are critical to meet the Department of Energy’s Hydrogen Shot, which seeks to reduce the cost of clean hydrogen by 80% to $1 per one kilogram in one decade.

“Clean hydrogen will play a major role in meeting our nation’s energy needs while decarbonizing the economy, creating clean energy jobs, and strengthening national security. Chemours’ Nafion™ membrane technology is vital to the production and utilization of hydrogen power, and we are proud to join this partnership to launch the Center for Clean Hydrogen at the University of Delaware,” said Mark Newman, Chemours President and CEO. “This Center will facilitate the research and development needed to drive these technologies forward while establishing Delaware as a world-class knowledge center for the hydrogen economy. On behalf of Chemours, I want to thank our partners and the entire Delaware Congressional Delegation for working together to shape a clean energy future.”

In addition, students and post-doctoral employees from the University of Delaware, a leading Chemical Engineering program, will have the opportunity to do stack assembly at scale, thereby helping to build the next-generation clean energy workforce. The students will gain experience with stack and component assembly, as well as electrical, mechanical, and chemical engineering skills that are required to operate the equipment safely. This experience and research are anticipated to lead to process improvements around the manufacturing of fuel cell and electrolyzer stacks.

“Through the new Center for Clean Hydrogen, University of Delaware leading researchers will collaborate with their peers in industry and government to develop breakthrough innovations and shape the talent and workforce to leapfrog into the future,” said University of Delaware President Dennis Assanis. “UD faculty and students will discover new ways to accelerate the energy transition by reducing the cost of clean hydrogen and related technologies. The Center will be a real game-changer in clean energy research as a catalyst for positive impact on our planet.”

As the U.S. and other nations across the globe work to accelerate the clean energy transition, hydrogen will play a major role. From providing power for military at bases to energy storage, or delivering clean, emission-free power for cars, heavy-duty trucks, and industry. Hydrogen power can help meet global needs in a way that is better for the climate and the environment. As the inventors of Nafion™ membranes and dispersion, Chemours’ chemistry plays a central role. The research and development that the Center for Clean Hydrogen will facilitate will help bring the solutions needed to drive hydrogen technology forward.

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