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Updates and Changes

March 2020: The links have been updated. We have added two recent publications to the Sources page. Matthew Eisler's book Overpotential, and website curator Hal Wallace's article "Fuel Cells: A Challenging History." Both include information about events that have taken place since this website went online in 2001.

March 2019: The links have been updated.

May 2018: The links have been updated.

April 2017: The links have been updated.

April 2016: The links have been updated.

April 2015: The links have been updated. We have acquired another significant collection of research materials that includes books, reports and promotional items. The books have been provided to the American History branch of the Smithsonian Libraries for addition to their holdings. The documentation and objects have been added to the Fuel Cell History Research Collection, part of the Electricity Collections here at NMAH. This donation came to us courtesy of the folks at Fuel Cells 2000. We are grateful to Robert Rose, Sandra Curtin and the team at the Breakthrough Technologies Institute for helping us to document the history of fuel cells.

April 2014: The links have been updated. We have acquired a significant collection of symposium proceedings, books and objects pertaining to fuel cell research during the latter half of the twentieth century. This material was gathered by the late John B. O’Sullivan during his many years in the industry and we thank Charlotte O. Heile, Theresa Norene O’Sullivan, and Sean O’Sullivan for this donation.

April 2013: The links have been updated. A link to the Smithsonian privacy statement has been added to the main page.

April 2012: The links have been updated.

April 2011: The links have been updated. Kevin Kantola, author of the Hydrogen Fuel Cars Now website posted information about the General Motors fuel cell-powered Electrovan of 1966. We exchanged emails about that vehicle and have added a link to the site. The Electricity Collections has a potassium hydroxide Union Carbide fuel cell from the Electrovan, museum catalog #2007.3061.01.

March 2010: The links have been updated.

August 2009: The links have been updated. Rob Privette at Ovonic Fuel Cell Company wrote to us pointing out that the amount of platinum in alkaline fuel cells has been reduced over the years. He noted that some researchers are attempting to eliminate platinum from their designs. We've amended our over-view of alkaline fuel cells accordingly.

August 2008: The links have been updated. We acquired a model of United Technologies' 4.8MW KOH fuel cell for their New York demonstration plant in the early 1980s. John O'Sullivan donated the object and a variety of graphics pertaining to that project, and MC Power's 250KW molten carbonate fuel cell power plant of 1994.

September 2007: The links have been updated. Our most recent acquisition is a desktop fuel cell demonstration belonging to the late Ronald Leonard who worked on fuel cells at Allis-Chalmers in the early 1960s. Leona Leonard donated the object, along with notes and several photographs of her husband in the lab.

December 2004: Aside from the addition of this updates page, several changes have been made on the Fuel Cell History Project website. We have discontinued the Future section since trade journals and special interest websites can do a better job of presenting current events. This allows us to focus more on our strength: presenting the past. Several of the Future images have been moved to the PEM section.

We have expanded the "Origins" section to two pages, reflecting additional reaserch. The Origins: 1840-1890 section discusses Grove's discovery and early attemps to place the device in the framework of emerging scientific theories. The section Origins: 1880-1965 briefly describes some of the fuel cell designs of that period.

Additional books and articles have been added to the Sources page, and the links have been updated. This is not an all-inclusive listing of fuel cell links, but rather a list of pages that provide information about some aspect of fuel cell history.

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