Neither rain, nor sleet, nor gloom of night will keep GM’s fuel cell minivan from its appointed rounds.At least that’s what the car manufacturer is hoping as it announced its first commercial application of fuel cell technology—a GM minivan that is being leased to the U.S. Postal Service as part of a pilot program in the Washington, D.C. area. The van will be used for mail deliveries starting in September, when the nation’s first hydrogen pump at a retail gas station is opened in Washington, D.C. GM executives have stated that the partnership with the Postal Service was a no-brainer. The vehicles will get an aggressive workout in the real-world driving conditions of the Postal Service.The program is also easy to expand, if a hydrogen infrastructure develops in other parts of the country, since the Postal Services operates from coast to coast. There are still many obstacles to overcome before fuel-cell technology hits the mainstream, but GM’s actions and the research being conducted by many other auto manufacturers show legislators, the media and the car-buying public that the retail automotive industry is supportive of the development and marketing of alternative fuel vehicles that consumers want.