For Immediate Release


Contact: Kenneth Sheinkopf
1679 Clearlake Road
Cocoa, FL 32922-5703
Phone: (321) 638-1007
FAX: (321) 638-1010
Early Holiday Gifts for Universities as Florida Solar Energy Center Awards $4.85 Million to Continue Hydrogen Research for NASA
 Cocoa, December 22, 2004  The Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) has awarded 
$4.85 million to Florida universities to conduct hydrogen research. As welcome as 
any holiday gift, the new awards will allow university researchers to continue 
work on existing projects and begin research on fuel cells for flight.  
Universities participating in the program are Florida A&M University, Florida 
International University, Florida  State University, University of Central 
Florida, University of Florida, University of South Florida and University of West 

 This multi-year, multi-million dollar project is funded by grants from NASA Glenn 
Research Center with the objective of supporting NASAs hydrogen-related space and 
space launch activities.  The total funding for this years NASA Hydrogen Research 
at Florida Universities was $7.275 million.  FSEC is co-program manager with the 
University of Florida. 

 The projects selected for the FSEC-led program were chosen through a merit-
review, competitive solicitation process by NASA Glenn Research Center and NASA 
Kennedy Space Center program managers, with review by FSEC program managers.

 Dr. Ali Raissi, Director of the Hydrogen R&D Division at FSEC, stated, This 
research is important to NASA because it represents a potential dollar savings to 
them of as much as $25 million per year.  These savings can be realized by 
avoiding loss of hydrogen through storage tank boiloff, employing local production 
of hydrogen, implementing new sensor technologies, and utilizing densified 

The fact that the KSC launch operation mimics prototypical future vehicular 
hydrogen fueling stations, in both fuel volume dispensed and its energy content, 
means that the investment in this research program will pay dividends as a model 
that can be replicated throughout the U. S. for the nations future hydrogen 

 Research resulting from the awards is expected to develop technologies and 
methodologies that can be applied by NASA for local hydrogen production and 
storage, advance safety through breakthrough sensor technologies, utilize high 
performance densified propellants, and expand the public's knowledge and 
understanding of hydrogen through education. New this year will be research to 
develop the use of fuel cells for aeropropulsion applications.  This is also the 
first year that Florida A&M University will participate in this program.

 The complete list of 30 projects funded by the $4.85 million may be seen at

 This three-year partnership has resulted in a successful scientific collaboration 
among seven Florida universities with a number of successes, including a strong 
technical program on an important national issue the hydrogen economy.  The 
partnership's research has secured well over $10 million in funding from U.S. 
Department of Energy, National Science Foundation and Department of Defense and 
has generated tens of millions of dollars in proposals still pending.

 The Florida Solar Energy Center, an Institute of the University of Central 
Florida, has a long history of hydrogen research and education.  Its hydrogen 
program began in 1983 with funding from NASA/Kennedy Space Center, and in 1997 
FSEC was designated a Center of Excellence in Hydrogen Research and Education by 
the U.S. Department of Energy.  Today, with the announcement of these awards, FSEC 
continues to expand its work in hydrogen research through the NASA program. 

 The Florida Solar Energy Center is the largest and most active state-supported 
renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development organization in 
the United States and functions as the State's energy research and training 
center. For more information about FSEC's hydrogen research programs, visit 
or For 
information about all of FSEC's programs, call FSEC Public Information Office at 
(321) 638-1015 or go to