View Conference Presentation - United States Association for

Download Report

Transcript View Conference Presentation - United States Association for

Cost Effectiveness Analysis of Defense
Department Deployment of Fuel Cell Forklifts
at Large Distribution Centers
Michael E. Canes
July 29, 2013
• Background
• Approach
• Results
• Conclusions
Senator Carl Levin (D-MI) sponsored a Congressional initiative for
DoD to test fuel cells in material handling equipment (largely
forklifts). The Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) carried out the
experiments on behalf of DoD.
Program purpose: assess the use of fuel cells in such equipment at
4 large defense distribution centers, with 4 different methods of
acquiring hydrogen fuel
Pilot project Sites
New Cumberland, PA (DDSP)
Warner Robins, GA (DDWG)
Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA (JBLM)
Tracy, CA (DDJC)
Hydrogen fuel acquisition
DDSP – from an outside source
DDWG – produced via reformation of natural gas
JBLM – produced via reformation from waste gas
DDJC – produced via electrolysis from water
Project sites
Hydrogen tank at DDSP
Refueling station at DDJC
Fuel dispensers at DDSP
Mobile refueler at DDWG
Fuel Cell Vehicles Included in the 4 experiments
• DDSP – 40 forklifts, 20 each supported by 2 different
• DDWG – 20 forklifts
• JBLM – 19 forklifts, 1 fuel cell bus
• DDJC – 20 forklifts
• Total: 99 forklifts, 1 bus
• Gather detailed cost data at each site from
participating manufacturers, onsite staff, open source
• Compare costs of fuel cells going forward with
pertinent alternatives
• Include capital and operating costs
• Analysis to cover about 10 years, real costs, no
Cost Categories – Hydrogen Production
Infrastructure depreciation
Infrastructure O&M
Infrastructure space
Fuel source
– DDWG – natural gas
– DDJC – water
• Power
• In each case, comparison made to cost of delivered
Cost Categories - Fuel Cells
• Forklift depreciation
• Forklift O&M
• Fuel cell O&M (including spares)
• Fuel cell refueling labor time
• Hydrogen infrastructure O&M
• Infrastructure space cost
• Hydrogen (either produced or delivered)
Cost categories – Batteries & Propane
• Batteries
Forklift depreciation
Forklift O&M
Battery depreciation
Battery O&M
Charger depreciation
Charger O&M
Power to recharge
– Battery change labor
– Infrastructure O&M
– Infrastructure space
• Propane
Forklift depreciation
Forklift O&M
– Infrastructure O&M
– Infrastructure space
– Refueling labor
Non-economic Factors
• Business Case Analysis mainly involved a
comparison of costs, but cited other factors:
Reduction in hydrocarbon emissions
Reduction in greenhouse gas emissions
Enhanced work productivity with fuel cells
DoD leadership in national energy effort by creating a
market opportunity for fuel cell technology
– Development of a transport option that might have value to
DoD & others in the future
Results - Comparative Costs of Hydrogen
Cost of Produced H2
Cost of delivered H2*
$6/kg (liquid)
DDWG (steam
methane reformer)
$22.50/kg (gaseous)
JBLM (waste gas
$8/kg (liquid)
$35/kg (gaseous)
*Not counting system losses.
**Insufficient information with which to estimate H2 production cost
Conclusions from Hydrogen Production Analysis
• Going in, production of H2 from natural gas thought to be
the least expensive option, but ongoing technical
problems with reformer reduced the attractiveness of this
• Producing hydrogen from waste gas is a great concept
but proved difficult to implement in practice
• Production via electrolysis turned out to be economic vis
a vis the cost of importing gaseous H2
– The electrolyzer ran a high percentage of the time
– Expensive to import gaseous H2 because of the high cost of
– Experiment associated with solar voltaic
production of electricity, but that
was treated as a separate investment
Results – Comparative Cost of Fuel Cell &
Battery Forklift at DDSP
40 forklifts
Fuel Cell Forklift
Fuel Cell Forklift with
Cost Reduction
Battery forklift
• Cost of hydrogen infrastructure plus fuel cell upkeep too high for fuel
cells to be economically competitive
• Cost reductions feasible but still leave fuel cells higher cost than
battery option
• Expansion of the fuel cell powered fleet would render this option more
competitive with batteries
Results – Comparative Cost of Fuel Cell and
Battery Forklift at DDWG
20 forklifts
Fuel Cell Forklift
Fuel Cell Forklift
with Cost
Battery Forklift
• Though cost reduction is possible at DDWG, fuel cells still more expensive than
• Expansion of the fuel cell fleet would make this option more competitive with
• More intense use of forklifts at DDWG would make fuel cells more competitive
Results – Comparative Cost of Fuel Cell and
Propane Forklift at JBLM
19 Forklifts
Fuel Cell Forklift
Propane Forklift
• Fuel cells are not competitive with propane at JBLM
• Propane is relatively inexpensive because it requires
little onsite infrastructure
• Forklifts used too little at JBLM to justify investment in
hydrogen infrastructure
• Adding the bus improves forklift economics but does not
make the overall project cost effective
Results – Comparative Cost of Fuel Cell and
Propane Forklift at DDJC
20 forklifts in base
Fuel Cell Forklift
Fuel Cell Forklift
with Cost
Propane Forklift
*Per forklift cost with 40 forklifts
• On strictly economic grounds, fuel cells not competitive against
• Expansion of forklift fleet from 20 to 40 reduces costs of fuel cell
forklifts more than propane
• Ongoing fuel cell operations would require subsidization
Overall Conclusions
• Fuel cells were not economically competitive in any
of DoD’s 4 experimental projects
• However, their relative attractiveness could be
increased by:
– Raising the intensity of their use
– Increasing the number of forklifts utilizing fuel cells at each
given site
– Downsizing H2 infrastructures to more closely accord with
– Accepting more of the risk of infrastructure failure
– Longer term contracts
– Taking advantage of tax breaks accorded fuel cells via
appropriate leasing arrangements
• Congressional support for the program initially obtained
by Senator Levin has not been renewed.
• DLA chose not to continue any of the 4 experiments past
the R&D stage.
• Fuel cells and other equipment from the projects given to
other government agencies.
• Program will wind up in early 2014.
• A great deal was learned about fuel cell operations and
economics, and the technology given a boost. Therefore,
from an R&D perspective, the program was successful.
However, fuel cell and hydrogen infrastructure costs must
come down if the technology is to become economically
viable in material handling vehicles without subsidy.
Thank you!