General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems (GA-EMS) has received a two-year contract from the US Army to develop a prototype high-pressure hydrogen generation system.

The hydrogen generation system will be used by the army for refuelling hydrogen vehicles in the battlefield.

The contract work involves design, fabrication, and demonstration of a prototype mobile platform for the on-demand generation of high-pressure hydrogen.

GA-EMS will use its aluminium alloy hydrogen-producing technology to develop the system. The company has not disclosed the value of the contract.

The proposed platform will produce hydrogen through a reaction between water and a dry aluminium alloy.

GA-EMS president Scott Forney said: “Vehicles powered by hydrogen fuel cells offer a more reliable, efficient, quiet, reduced thermal signature and environmentally sound option to support field operations.

“With a battlefield-based hydrogen fuelling station, the army can improve vehicle range, improve efficiency, and reduce dependency on oil and the logistical burden that is associated with it.

“Under this contract, we will provide a deployable, hydrogen generation platform with the capability to produce high-purity, high-pressure hydrogen for more efficient ground vehicle support.”

The hydrogen generation system will use local water resources.

The company stated that the on-demand generation of hydrogen will also remove the need to transport and store ‘large amounts of hydrogen to support longer-range power requirements’.

Last month, GA-EMS was awarded a contract by Dynetics Technical Solutions for the production of subassemblies for the US Army’s Common Hypersonic Glide Body (C-HGB) project.