OTTAWA, ON (August 12, 2021) NGIF Industry Grants, a division of NGIF Capital Corporation, is supporting the ongoing testing and validation of Hydrogen Optimized’s high-current RuggedCell™ alkaline unipolar electrolyser technology. Through $300,000 in approved funding, the project will demonstrate the company’s large-scale green hydrogen production technology under solar panel, simulated wind turbine, and intermittent electrical grid conditions.

Hydrogen Optimized is a Canadian hydrogen technology company. The company seeks to become the world leader in the provision of large-scale green hydrogen production systems, and thereby assist major industries to significantly reduce their emissions.

The RuggedCell™ is designed to operate under high currents which maximize hydrogen production while maintaining a compact and robust cell structure. The company’s vision is to make large-scale green hydrogen economically feasible for industrial applications by leveraging its novel RuggedCell™ technology.

“Next-generation hydrogen technologies, including Hydrogen Optimized’s high-current water electrolyser, can enable hydrogen production for blending with natural gas and ultimately reduce the industry’s emissions profile,” said John Adams, President and CEO of NGIF Capital Corporation and Managing Partner of NGIF Cleantech Ventures. “The NGIF model offers industry validation which is key to customer creation and market commercialization for startups who are leading in the emerging hydrogen industry.”

Hydrogen Optimized’s RuggedCell™ water electrolyzers have a unique unipolar design which overcomes the historic difficulties of bipolar electrolyzers in effectively using all the available energy from intermittent electricity sources. This, in turn, makes the RuggedCell™ an ideal solution for industrial end users to decarbonize their processes using green hydrogen.

“We thank NGIF Industry Grants for providing funding support for the advancement of our innovative RuggedCell™ water electrolysis technology,” said Andrew T.B. Stuart, President and CEO of Hydrogen Optimized. “The funding will help us obtain critical data on the performance of RuggedCell™ electrolyzers in conjunction with unstable renewable electricity sources and, ultimately, to achieve our goal of driving down the cost of producing green hydrogen at scale. It will also help us support the work of Canada’s natural gas industry to reduce the emissions intensity of natural gas.”

“I am pleased to see NGIF Industry Grants supporting Hydrogen Optimized’s work in advancing green hydrogen production,” said Timothy M. Egan, President and CEO of the Canadian Gas Association and Chair of NGIF Capital Corporation, which operates NGIF Industry Grants. “The versatility of natural gas and its energy infrastructure help explain how the natural gas industry is ideally suited to lead on efforts to integrate hydrogen and intermittent renewable electricity sources in the energy system. It is exciting to see innovative Canadian startups leveraging the affordability and reliability of natural gas in order to advance the industry’s environmental performance and support Canadians’ daily energy needs into the future.”

Pacific Northern Gas

About NGIF Industry Grants

NGIF Industry Grants is a first-of-kind, industry-led grant organization to fund early-stage startups developing solutions to environmental and other challenges facing Canada’s natural gas sector. NGIF Industry Grants develops, demonstrates and de-risks these technology solutions through field trials and pilot projects to drive innovation and support environmental goals in Canada. NGIF Industry Grants’ investment focus is on existing natural gas production, transmission, distribution, storage, and end-use applications, as well as projects that will lead to the expanded production of emerging gaseous fuels like renewable natural gas and hydrogen. The organization has built a portfolio of startups, trusted partnerships with government for co-funding opportunities, and a robust technical evaluation investment model. NGIF Industry Grants is operated by NGIF Capital Corporation.

About NGIF Capital Corporation
NGIF Capital Corporation is a Canadian venture capital (VC) firm offering grant and equity financing for startups that deliver solutions to the environmental and other challenges facing the natural gas sector. NGIF Capital Corporation is unique in how it brings Canada’s energy industry leadership to every investment. Like other VCs, it takes new companies and their ideas from concept to commercialization. Unlike other VCs, NGIF Capital Corporation has strong connections to every part of the gas value chain, from production through to end-use, offering it a means to test, develop, and accelerate the commercial implementation of innovative gas technology wherever it fits in the sector. The model benefits consumers, investors, and Canadian society as a whole. NGIF Capital Corporation operates NGIF Industry Grants (the original Natural Gas Innovation Fund), the NGIF Emissions Testing Centre, and NGIF Cleantech Ventures. NGIF Capital Corporation is wholly owned by CGA Enterprises, a venture of the Canadian Gas Association.

About CGA
The Canadian Gas Association is the voice of Canada’s natural gas delivery industry. Its membership includes natural gas distribution and transmission companies, equipment manufacturers, and suppliers to the industry. Our utility members are active in eight provinces and one territory and meet 35 per cent of Canadians’ energy needs through a network of over 566,000 kilometers of underground infrastructure. This infrastructure can also be used to deliver renewable gases including renewable natural gas and hydrogen, in order to contribute to Canada’s greenhouse gas emission reductions. Today, over 7.2 million customer locations representing approximately two-thirds of Canadians, rely on natural gas for clean, affordable, and reliable heating and power. CGA owns CGA Enterprises, which in turn owns NGIF Capital Corporation.

About Hydrogen Optimized

Hydrogen Optimized is a private hydrogen technology company that develops and commercializes large-scale Green Hydrogen production systems. It is part of Key DH Technologies Inc., a group of innovation-driven businesses in the deuterium and hydrogen industries. As a sustainable energy conversion company, Hydrogen Optimized enables the conversion of green electricity into Green Hydrogen and the transformation of heavy fossil fuel-use industries into sustainability leaders. We seek to be the first water electrolysis company to supply an aggregate of 10 GW of hydrogen production equipment. For more information on Hydrogen Optimized, please visit

Media Information:

Sarah Robinson
Manager, Communications
NGIF Capital Corporation
Don Hogarth
Director of Communications
Fund Information:
John Adams
President and CEO, NGIF Capital Corporation
Managing Partner, NGIF Cleantech Ventures