ChevronTexaco, GM Team to Advance Gasoline Processing for Fuel Cell Vehicles
San Francisco, Oct. 24, 2001 -- ChevronTexaco Corp. and General Motors Corp. today announced a multi-year research collaboration to speed up the pace at which gasoline-fed fuel cell vehicles move into the market.
ChevronTexaco brings technologies developed for refinery and chemical processes that selectively complement GM's fuel processing research capabilities and development programs.
"Car technology is changing, and we need to work to modify our fuels for use in fuel cell vehicles," said Gary Masada, president of ChevronTexaco's Energy Research and Technology Co. "We're pleased to be collaborating with GM, one of the world's leading developers of fuel cell technology."
The multi-year agreement will help accelerate GM's efforts to offer a gasoline-fed fuel cell vehicle to retail customers, according to Byron McCormick, executive director for GM's development of gasoline-fed fuel cell vehicles. Vehicle emissions are dramatically reduced and fuel economy improved by more than 50 percent as a result of gasoline-fed fuel cells replacing conventional gasoline-fed engines.
"We've said before that GM intends to make gasoline-fed fuel cells our interim strategy until a hydrogen infrastructure is established," McCormick said. "The set of innovative technologies which ChevronTexaco has agreed to bring to our research effort will help us to move closer to making our goal a reality."
In a fuel cell system running on gasoline, a fuel processor converts gasoline into hydrogen. This is typically done by reacting the gasoline with air and water using a series of reactors, which contain catalysts to promote these reactions. The hydrogen then mixes with oxygen from air to generate electricity in a fuel cell stack. Sulfur in gasoline would poison the fuel cell system, so on-board removal of sulfur from gasoline is one important goal of the collaboration.
According to both companies, this collaboration also will help ensure that an economically producible gasoline can be used in vehicles with fuel cells or conventional internal combustion engines.
This summer GM unveiled the world's first gasoline fuel processor for fuel cell propulsion packaged in a Chevrolet S-10 pickup. Demonstration ride and drives are planned for next year.
General Motors, the world's largest vehicle manufacturer, designs, builds and markets cars and trucks worldwide. In 2000, GM earned $5 billion on sales of $183.3 billion. It employs about 386,000 people globally. For more on GM, go to www.gm.com.
ChevronTexaco Corp. is an integrated global energy company created this month with the merger of Chevron Corp. and Texaco Inc. ChevronTexaco participates in virtually all aspects of the global energy business with wide-ranging activities in more than 180 countries. It is the third largest energy company in terms of global oil reserves and fourth largest in global oil and natural gas production. It sells more than 3.5 million barrels of refined products daily and has more than 25,000 retail outlets under the Chevron, Texaco and Caltex brands. It is the fourth largest company in the global lubricants business, an industry leader in the power and gasification businesses and has extensive technology operations, ranging from core business research and development to e-business and venture capital activities.
Updated: October 2001