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Home > H2 Refuel H-Prize

H2 Refuel H-Prize

In October 2014, DOE launched the $1 million H2 Refuel H-Prize to challenge America's engineers and entrepreneurs to develop systems for small-scale hydrogen fueling. The prize targets systems used at homes or multi-user sites to supplement the current development of hydrogen fueling station infrastructure. Finalists will install and test systems that generate hydrogen from electricity and/or natural gas, resources available to most homes, and dispense the hydrogen into vehicles. Finalist systems will be evaluated to demonstrate whether they meet both the technical and cost criteria as outlined in the final guidelines. The team that demonstrates the best system will be awarded a $1 million cash prize.

H2 Refuel H-Prize Guideline Update

The guidelines for the $1 million H2 Refuel H-Prize have been updated with clarifications, corrections, and additional information, including an alternative scoring process to be used if no finalist entry receives at least a score of one in all the scoring criteria categories. A summary of these changes are provided below.

  • Alternative scoring process: New information and comments received by the Department of Energy and the Hydrogen Education Foundation (the H-Prize administrator) indicate that the minimum score targets for two criteria may not be achievable in the competition timeframe. If any entry receives at least the minimum score for all scoring criteria, the winner will be determined as described in the original guidelines. In the event that no entry receives at least the minimum score for all scoring criteria, the alternative process will be implemented to relax targets as necessary for availability and/or total installed system cost.

  • Clarifications: Added clarifications to reduce confusion. The most significant clarifications emphasize that cost criteria are based on actual costs of the H2 Refuel system entry, not projected future costs.

  • Added information: Expanded the tie resolution process, and laid out communication expectations for the finalists.

  • Typographical error: Corrected a typo in the dispensing time criteria table.

  • Scoring criteria evaluation updates: As indicated in the guidelines, additional criteria and testing information have been and will continue to be provided on the H-Prize website. The guideline update includes additional information on Tested Availability, Direct User Costs, and Total Installed System Costs.

The full, updated guidelines can be found in the Federal Register and on the H-Prize website.

Competition Plan and Prize

The H2 Refuel competition will last two years. In the first year, contestants will have 12 months to find partners, design a system, find a place to install the system, and register for the prize before submitting data and designs to a team of independent judges. During the second year judges will select the top entries as finalists to go to the testing phase. Once selected, finalists will have seven months to build, install, and prepare their systems for testing. Remote and on-site testing will be used to collect data for the technical criteria, and independent financial experts will evaluate the cost criteria. Each entry will be scored based on the results, and the finalist team that gets the highest score while meeting the minimum criteria will win a prize of $1 million.

For more information about the prize, including registration information and other updates, visit the H-Prize website.