Global technology and power solutions leader Cummins Inc. (NYSE: CMI) will provide its 5-megawatt PEM electrolyzer to enable renewable energy for the Douglas County Public Utility District (Douglas County PUD) in Washington state. The Cummins electrolyzer will be dedicated to producing hydrogen from renewable energy and will be the largest, as well as first of its kind in use by a public utility, in the United States.
Expected to be operational in 2021, the new renewable hydrogen facility allows the Douglas County PUD to manufacture commercial hydrogen using electrolysis to harvest hydrogen from water from Wells Dam on the Columbia River. The PEM electrolyzer system, which stands for proton exchange membrane, takes the excess renewable energy and through a chemical reaction splits water into hydrogen and oxygen. The hydrogen acts as an energy carrier and the oxygen is released into the air. The hydrogen can then be stored in a gas or liquid state to be used in a multitude of applications, including fuel cell electric mobility. The electrolyzer is powered by clean hydroelectricity, so the production of hydrogen does not generate any carbon emissions.