November 4, 2021
News Release

Renewable Hydrogen Fuel Being Studied for the Port of Seattle

Research team exploring safety and feasibility of clean hydrogen to replace some fossil fuel uses

animated hydrogen station

The city of Seattle is planning for a clean energy future. They are studying how zero-emission liquid hydrogen (green) could be generated to fuel heavy-duty vehicles. Planners envision the potential for hydrogen to generate on-demand electricity for ships at port (yellow) to replace burning of diesel fuel. Hydrogen even has the potential to power a mini electric grid, providing crucial backup power in the event of a natural disaster.

(Image by Sara Levine | Pacific Northwest National Laboratory)

RICHLAND, Wa.—The city of Seattle is planning for a cleaner, greener energy future, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is helping them achieve their energy goals. Two multi-year projects supported by the Department of Energy’s Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies Office under the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy are exploring how sustainably produced hydrogen fuel can help fuel the city’s future.

“PNNL is proud to partner with Seattle City Light and the Port of Seattle to help accelerate their transition to a clean energy future,” said Philip Jensen, PNNL engineer and project manager.

The city of Seattle is planning for a clean energy future. They are studying how zero-emission liquid hydrogen (green) could be generated to fuel heavy-duty vehicles. Planners envision the potential for hydrogen to generate on-demand electricity for ships at port (yellow) to replace burning of diesel fuel. Hydrogen even has the potential to power a mini electric grid, providing crucial backup power in the event of a natural disaster. (Animation by Sara Levine | Pacific Northwest National Laboratory)

Two studies will assess the issues associated with scaling up hydrogen infrastructure large enough to serve the Port of Seattle’s maritime-related and electrical grid uses. The research is part of Seattle City Light's "Utility Next" portfolio, a collection of 17 prospective projects to enable Seattle’s vision of a clean energy future. Collectively, these projects will transform Seattle City Light's grid, meet future demand, and explore the future of clean energy development of the region.

Learn more about the project at Seattle City Light.

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Pacific Northwest National Laboratory draws on its distinguishing strengths in chemistry, Earth sciences, biology and data science to advance scientific knowledge and address challenges in sustainable energy and national security. Founded in 1965, PNNL is operated by Battelle for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science, which is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States. DOE’s Office of Science is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit https://​ener​gy​.gov/​s​c​ience. For more information on PNNL, visit PNNL's News Center. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.