Fuel cell specifications

Every day, gas producing companies that are active in delivering hydrogen in the hydrogen fuel cell sector depend on PDC Machines diaphragm compressors for contamination-free and leak-tight gas compression.

We provide an extensive line of basic to fully instrumented compression systems in accordance with our customer specifications. Our range of supply covers:

  • Discharge pressures range from 50 psi to 60,000 Psi (3. 4 bar to 4,137 bar)
  • Power consumption from 3 hp to 200 hp ( 2 kW to 150 kW)
  • Maintains integrity of ultra-high purity gas as required by PEM fuel cells (Polymer Electrolyte Membrane/Proton Exchange Membrane)
  •  Self-clamping boot strap design for pressures over 10,000 psig (690 bar)
  •  Corrosion resistant materials for compatibility with various process applications (300 Series SS, etc.)
  •  All piping, tubing and wetted parts are constructed from 316 stainless steel. The use of carbon steel in the process system results in corrosion, contamination and ultimately mechanical failure of piping components and compressor diaphragms. Stainless steel construction provides a reliable, low maintenance and long lasting system


Linde supplied a hydrogen re-fueling station to Walmart for material handling. PDC Machines packaged the re-fueling system which contained our compressor inside the container.


Scope of supply

Basic compressors: The basic single-stage or duplex diaphragm compressor includes a static conductive oil resistant V-belt drive system, non-sparking OSHA belt guard, electric motor with adjustable rail, welded steel framework, diaphragm failure leak detection system, after-cooler and inlet filter.


BOC/Linde used a PDC Machines compressor in its joint venture to build 1st Shanghai hydrogen station in collaboration with Tongji University and Shell.


A two-stage diaphragm compressor includes the above as well as an inter-stage gauge, inter-stage accumulator, inter-stage relief valve, inter-cooler and after-cooler.


Korea Institute of Energy Research (KIER) Hydrogen Refueling Station, Korea. This station is capable of refueling 5 passenger vehicles per day.


PDC Machines can also supply a closed loop water cooling system fully integrated into the skid. If the compressor will be installed in cold climates (temperatures below 40oF/4 oC), a winterization package can be provided. This consists of a crank-case heater with switching thermostat along with heat tracing for the hydraulic piping and heads.


Instrumentation and controls

A diaphragm compressor complete with instrumentation and controls includes the basic compressor, noted above, as well as a control panel, transformers, relays, motor starter, start-stop button, suction pressure switch, discharge safety pressure switches (low-Hi) and (Hi-Hi), suction and discharge pressure gauges, water flow indicator and switch, temperature indicators, auto-unloading, suction and discharge pulsation dampeners, pressure and temperature transmitters. PDC Machines can supply a hard-wired relay logic control or fully programmed PLC system.


Air Products hydrogen refueling station supplied to BP for filling mass transit fuel cell buses in Beijing, China to shuttle athletes and visitors during the summer Olympics in 2008.


Our diaphragm compressors can be provided with complete instrumentation for automatic or remote operation

Every system is supplied completely piped, wired, and fully tested before shipment.


PDC-4-2500-15000 (150) Two-Stage Compressor, Hydrogen Refueling Stations, 1000 BAR/15,000 PSIG Discharge Pressure, 100 kg/day Flow Rate, 30 kW/ 40 HP. Location: World-wide


Purity of inlet gas

It is critical for the source of gas entering the compressor to be clean and dry,  i.e it does not contain water mist, droplets, oil mist, water vapor, or any other gases that could condense during any phase of h2 compressor operation though final discharge. Single or dual 10 micron inlet filter systems are installed installed into the compressor to help maintain the purity of the gas.


Codes and standards

  • Electrical NFPA-70 National Electric Code, Class 1, Division II, Group B
  • Piping ANSI B31.3 Process Piping
  • Mechanical ASME Section VIII, Division 1
  • CE Compliant to all Applicable European Directives
  • Korean Gas Safety KGS and KOSHA
  • Japanese KHK High Pressure Gas Law Requirements and Chinese SQL
  • CSA for Canadian Standards Compliance such as CSA and CRN


A hydrogen fueling station supplied by Air Liquide Canada installed in Whistler, BC, Canada featuring a PDC Machines diaphragm compressor used during the 2010 Winter Olympics for filling fuel cell buses.