The lunch keynote speaker at Toyota's Sustainable Mobility Seminar today was Scott Samuelsen, director of the National Fuel Cell Research Center at University of California, Irvine. When he was talking about the on-campus hydrogen fueling station, he said that the facility was overtaxed by the 15 or so vehicles it refuels on an average day. We asked why so few cars are putting this big a strain on the station, since that's not exactly high traffic. Samuelsen told AutoblogGreen that the station was built to provide around 25 kilograms of hydrogen a day. On busy days, the station can sometimes pump out over 40 kilograms, but there are still times when the station needs to send out tweets to let hydrogen car drivers in the area know they need to wait around five hours to come in and refuel.

The problem isn't the amount of hydrogen, since there's plenty of that to be had at the station. The bottleneck is the compressors used to get the H2 down to 350 bar. The hydrogen is pressurized to 700 bar when it's going into the tank, but it's stored at 350 on site. The average hydrogen car can hold around four kilograms of H2, but it often happens that the cars come in when they're half empty for a recharge. Samuelsen said that newer stations are designed to provide 100 kilograms a day or more, so stories like this don't necessarily preview what H2 drivers will experience in the future. The UCI station was opened in 2007.

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