Plug Power Inc., a leader in providing clean, reliable energy solutions, announced that Sysco has deployed 98 GenDrive™ fuel cell units to power a fleet of The Raymond Corporation's electric lift trucks at its new Houston, Texas distribution center. GenDrive product is placed into 72 Raymond Model 8400 pallet trucks and 26 Raymond Model 7400 Reach-Fork(R) trucks. Sysco celebrated a grand-opening of its highly-efficient distribution center today.
The units will be immediately put to work, moving both dry and freezer goods throughout the 585,000 square foot facility. Cold-storage areas of the distribution center can reach temperatures as low as negative eight degrees Fahrenheit. Unlike lead-acid batteries that do not react well under cold temperatures, fuel cells continue to meet or exceed customer requirements despite the sub-zero temperature.
Indoor hydrogen fueling dispensers, provided by Air Products (APD 70.65, +0.11, +0.16%) , are strategically located throughout the distribution center. Truck operators can quickly refuel the GenDrive units in less than 2 minutes, completely eliminating the need to change, store, charge and maintain multiple lead-acid batteries per truck.
Plug Power's environmentally friendly power solution also allows Sysco to significantly reduce its greenhouse gas emissions created at its new facility. GenDrive, fueled with hydrogen, creates only water and heat as by-products.
"Sysco has been a great customer to work with throughout GenDrive's field testing and we're excited to see them now convert a full Raymond fleet from batteries to fuel cells," said Andy Marsh, CEO at Plug Power. "Sysco is a market leader in adopting green technologies and we are proud to be a partner in their successful efforts to commercialize alternative energy resources."
Sysco, the global leader in the food service distribution industry, has been involved in the development and field testing of GenDrive power units since 2001. Its interest allowed Sysco to witness the financial, operational and environmental benefits that fuel cell solutions offer. Sysco operates more than 190 distribution centers across North America.
This installation is partially funded by an award made to Sysco in April, 2009 by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The DOE intends this funding to accelerate the commercialization and deployment of fuel cells and create jobs in fuel cell manufacturing, installation, maintenance and support services.
About Plug Power Inc.
The architects of modern fuel cell technology, Plug Power revolutionized the industry with cost-effective power solutions that increase productivity, lower operating costs and reduce carbon footprints. Long-standing relationships with industry leaders forged the path for our key accounts, including Sysco, Wegmans, Whole Foods, and FedEx Freight. With more than 1,000 units in the field and over 1.5 million hours of runtime, Plug Power manufactures tomorrow's incumbent power solutions today. Visit us at www.plugpower.com .