GM, Honda Launch Pioneering Hydrogen Fuel Cell Facility

The new co-developed fuel cell system increases performance and doubles durability while significantly reducing manufacturing cost.

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The new fuel cell systems being produced at FCSM are one-third less expensive to produce and twice as durable as the system in the 2019 Honda Clarity Fuel Cell, seen here.

GM and Honda have commenced production at their joint venture facility, FCSM, in in Brownstown, MI, the first large-scale manufacturing joint venture focused on building fuel cells.

Since its establishment in January 2017, with a joint investment of $85 million, the 70,000-square-foot facility has generated 80 jobs. These world-class hydrogen power solutions will be used in various applications by both companies.

“This is a historic day for the industry as GM and Honda are the first full fuel cell system manufacturing joint venture to begin volume production of fuel cells for transportation and beyond,” said FCSM President Suheb Haq. “We begin the process with raw materials for membrane and electrode all the way through completed systems. Ongoing investment and commitment by both companies is driving our success at FCSM. This commitment aligns with our mission of making high quality, durable and affordable hydrogen fuel cell systems for a wide range of applications and customers.”

"We integrated the strengths of Honda and GM to create the most capable production system at this joint venture," said Tetsuo Suzuki, vice president of FCSM. "We brought a mass production mindset with attention to detail and a focus on high quality, and now we are ready to meet the needs of the customers for the future applications of fuel cell technology and the beginning of the hydrogen era."

The collaboration between Honda and GM dates back to 2013, focusing on the co-development of the next-generation fuel cell system. This partnership has led to significant improvements in fuel cell system performance, including doubling the durability compared to the 2019 Honda Clarity Fuel Cell and advancements in low-temperature operation and corrosion resistance.

Cost efficiency was another primary focus of the partnership. The new fuel cell systems will be one-third less expensive to produce than the fuel cell system in the 2019 Honda Clarity Fuel Cell, achieved through economies of scale, advanced cell design, simplified auxiliary equipment, common sourcing and reduced use of precious metals.

Quality and productivity improvements at FCSM have been paramount, incorporating innovative methods for automating membrane-electrode-assembly production and fuel cell stack assembly. This venture combines the intellectual property and expertise of both GM and Honda engineering teams to create commercially viable hydrogen fuel cell systems for a variety of zero-emissions propulsion and energy management applications.

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