About Fuel Cells

A fuel cell is a device that uses hydrogen (or a hydrogen-rich fuel) and oxygen to create an electric current. View the fuel cell animation below which illustrates how a fuel cell works. Also, watch this video on how Connecticut is moving the hydrogen economy forward.

The magnitude of power produced by a fuel cell depends on several factors, including fuel cell type, cell size, the temperature at which it operates, and the pressure at which the gases are supplied to the cell. A single fuel cell produces enough electricity for only the smallest applications. Therefore, to provide the power needed for most applications, individual fuel cells are combined in series into a fuel cell stack. A typical fuel cell stack may consist of hundreds of fuel cells.

Learn more about fuel cells.


Fuel cells have the potential to replace the internal combustion engine in vehicles and provide power for stationary and portable power applications. They can be used in transportation applications, such as powering automobiles, buses, cycles, and other vehicles. Many portable devices can be powered by fuel cells, such as laptop computers and cell phones. They can also be used for stationary applications, such as providing electricity to power homes and businesses.Learn more about fuel cell uses.


Fuel cells are cleaner and more efficient than traditional combustion-based engines and power plants. When pure hydrogen is used to power a fuel cell, the only byproducts are water and heat—no pollutants or greenhouse gases are produced. That’s good for our health and the environment. Since fuel cell technology is more efficient than combustion-based technologies, less energy is needed to provide the same amount of power. Finally, because hydrogen can be produced using a wide variety of resources found right here in the United States—including natural gas, biological material, and even water—using hydrogen fuel cells reduces our dependence on other countries for fuel. Click here for more information on the benefits of hydrogen and fuel cells.

Connecticut Fuel Cell Industry Map

Current Fuel Cell Installations in Connecticut


Fuel cell Animation
Fuel Cell Animation

Animation (c) 2003 Michigan Technological University.
Investigator: Dr. Gerald Caneba. Animator: Dr. Susan E. Hill.
Used with permission.

Source: U.S. Dept of Energy