Amazon’s Hydrogen Leap: Forklifts Powered by Innovation

Plug Power Inc. marks a milestone by installing a cutting-edge electrolyzer at an Amazon fulfillment center in Colorado. This
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Synopsis

Plug Power Inc. marks a milestone by installing a cutting-edge electrolyzer at an Amazon fulfillment center in Colorado. This innovation generates low-carbon hydrogen, fuelling over 225 forklift trucks, setting a precedent for on-site hydrogen production. The move aligns with Amazon's pledge towards decarbonization and Plug Power's commitment to advancing the green hydrogen economy.

Article:

In a groundbreaking initiative, Plug Power Inc. successfully deployed an electrolyzer at an Amazon fulfillment center located in Aurora, Colorado. This one-megawatt proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolyzer is a pioneering endeavor for Amazon, introducing low-carbon hydrogen to power more than 225 hydrogen fuel cell-driven forklift trucks at DEN8, the site.

The Plug 1MW electrolyzer, utilizing electricity and water to produce hydrogen, holds the capacity to support up to 400 hydrogen fuel cell-powered forklift trucks. The generated hydrogen undergoes compression on-site and is stored within a gaseous hydrogen storage tank for the operation of these trucks.

Andy Marsh, CEO of Plug Power, expressed, “Amazon's recognition of hydrogen's pivotal role in our energy future demonstrates a substantial partnership. This project showcases Plug's proficiency across the hydrogen value chain, illustrating our capability in crafting end-to-end solutions for our clients.”

Plug Power has collaborated extensively with Amazon, deploying over 17,000 fuel cells to replace batteries in forklifts across 80+ fulfillment centers in North America. However, most locations source hydrogen from external sites, liquefy it, and transport it via trucks to an on-site storage and dispensing setup.

Identifying an opportunity, especially where surplus renewable electricity exists, Plug strategized to utilize this excess power for on-site hydrogen production. This innovative model bypasses emissions usually generated during the liquefaction and transportation of hydrogen.

Amazon's Director of Global Hydrogen Economy, Asad Jafry, stated, “Hydrogen aligns with our commitment to decarbonize by 2040 under The Climate Pledge. On-site production enhances energy efficiency, a crucial aspect for specific locations and facility types.”

Plug's role in this project encompassed the provision of design, installation, commissioning, and maintenance services for the 1MW PEM electrolyzer and hydrogen storage, ensuring compatibility with existing refueling infrastructure and fuel cells at the site. This marks the installation and operationalization of the first electrolyzer system at an Amazon facility.

Conclusion

Plug Power's latest feat—installing an electrolyzer at an Amazon center—ushers in a new era for hydrogen-powered forklifts. This move aligns with Amazon's decarbonization goals and showcases Plug's prowess in advancing the green hydrogen economy. The success of this partnership exemplifies the potential of on-site hydrogen production for emission reduction.

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