Hydrogen Engine Center has been building hydrogen fueled engines since 2003. In 2004 HEC added engine controls and then combined these two technologies to build gensets. HEC was developed with the objective of producing distributive power, for industrial clients, fueled by alternative fuels, such as hydrogen, natural gas, anhydrous ammonia, methanol, propane, syn-gas, landfill gas and other alternative fuels.
Even though HEC has utilized many of its resources in developing technology, nearly 1500 engines and gensets have been successfully sent to the field. HEC has made significant technological advancements in its first 10 years of existence. The company has patented a special alignment hub which allows our gensets to run at 3600 rpm, twice as fast as our competitors, producing twice as much power. This gives us what we call an “unfair advantage”, since it gives us a special price advantage over our competitors.
HEC has designed and built two special engines patterned after the Ford 300 and the Ford 460 engines. Over 30 modifications, increasing the efficiency and durability of our engines, including specialized electronic controls and a proprietary fuel injection system have been made, to make these engines truly unique. HEC has developed the largest internal combustion, spark-ignited, hydrogen engine, creating up to 200 kW with one genset.
To be recognized in the “distributive power sector” reaching a one megawatt milestone is an important achievement. HEC has reached this pinnacle of success with its N+1 technology, allowing multiple gensets to be installed in parallel, creating multiple megawatts of power. The company has a 2 megawatt installation and we regularly quote even larger systems.
The company was the first to ever run an internal combustion, spark-ignited, engine on anhydrous ammonia; which we believe will play an important role in the future of hydrogen. The uniqueness and significance of what we are doing has been recognized by the patent office. An important patent involving the use of anhydrous ammonia and hydrogen in an internal combustion engine was granted to the company in the fall of 2011.
The company has continued to innovate. These achievements are detailed under “Our Products/HEC Products Are Unique” on this website. Our most recent “patent pending” technology is the development of a new wet-sleeve engine and a unique intake manifold that increases the efficiency and power of an engine.
The future of HEC will be in the exploitation of its technology by manufacturing and marketing gensets. While continuing to play a leadership role in developing power with the use of hydrogen and other alternative fuels, we feel it is important to respond to market forces. Natural gas and propane, being much cleaner burning fuels than diesel are reducing pollution by up to ½, and are fuels we targeting for the future.