Hyundai fuel cell ix35 – on the farm
Europe

Hyundai fuel cell ix35 – on the farm


Hyundai are one of a number of manufacturers who have chosen to favour the fuel cell route to low emissions motoring, and their Hydrogen powered ix35 is being trialled in Europe by the EU Commission backed ‘Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking’ group, who use the vehicle to demonstrate the benefits of hydrogen fuel cell technology to EU policy makers, by driving them around Brussels.

Hyundai claim that the ix35 is “the world’s first production model Hydrogen Fuel Cell vehicle”, Honda’s FCX-Clarity was actually there first, but none the less; the ix35 is an impressive vehicle and like Toyota and Mercedes, they plan to launch a full scale production model in 2015.

Leading up to that launch Hyundai are busily promoting the benefits of Hydrogen to consumers as well as the Policy makers of Brussels – with battery EVs already available to the public, charge networks growing, and the fact that Hydrogen Vehicles will only be useful if drivers can buy Hydrogen: there is a great deal of work to be done to lobby and encourage the infrastructure investment to happen for fuel cell vehciles as well as Battery EVs: the role out of hydrogen filling stations is now (more…)

Daimler ask the German government to invest in H2 refuelling infrastructure
Fuel cells

Daimler ask the German government to invest in H2 refuelling infrastructure


At Frankfurt last month, Prof Dr Thomas Weber, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG stated “hydrogen fuel cell is long-term mobility solution”, and when questioned about the delayed launch of the fuel cell powered B-Class, he said: “Our decision [to delay] was based on the infrastructure situation. We have shifted it a few years to 2016 or 2017… …Technology-wise we are nearly ready, but where are the fuel stations?”

Three weeks later Daimler announce the H2 Mobility initiative: a plan for the construction of a hydrogen refuelling network in Germany.

  • 400 hydrogen refuelling filling stations by 2023
  • Overall investment of around €350 million planned
  • Precondition: the market success of fuel cell powered electric vehicles initiated

This is good news for low emission vehicles, but that last point is probably quite a big one, effectively a caveat that the German government needs to support H2…

“a request for support to the German Federal Government. Following the foundation of a joint venture (subject to necessary regulatory approvals), gradual expansion of the national filling station network will commence next year…

…Continuation of the innovation and research activities in this field which are envisaged in the mobility and fuel strategy of the (more…)

Ballard Power Systems signs agreement to develop fuel cell buses in China

Canada’s Ballard Power Systems extended an agreement with Azure Hydrogen Corporation of Beijing to include fuel cell buses in order to help address the air quality issue in China

Azure plans to develop fuel cell bus capabilities in China with Ballard’s technical support and funding from Chinese sources, including both private investors and various levels of Government. Ballard fuel cell power modules are currently powering zero emission fuel cell buses in public transit service across a number of sites in North America and Europe.

China’s rapid economic expansion over the past decade has resulted in a public concern regarding deteriorating levels of air quality.

VANCOUVER, CANADA – China’s rapid economic expansion over the past decade has resulted in a public concern regarding deteriorating levels of air quality. The China State Council is investing 1.8T Yuan (US$288 billion) in the renewable energy industry over the period 2010-15, along with 2.3T Yuan (US$368 billion) on actions designed to save energy and reduce emissions.

Background
Given the size and rapid growth of China’s economy, the country has considerably larger carbon dioxide emissions than other nations, including the U.S. For example, China’s carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels accounted for 28% of the global total in (more…)

“Hydrogen fuel cell is long-term mobility solution” – Prof Dr Thomas Weber
Batteries

“Hydrogen fuel cell is long-term mobility solution” – Prof Dr Thomas Weber

According to statements made by Prof Dr Thomas Weber – Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG – at the Frankfurt Motorshow: Hydrogen fuel cells is the future for clean transport, with plug in electric vehicles mainly as small city cars.

I agree that hybrid, fuel cell and EV technologies all have relevance in the future of road transport, but if I had to pick a technology that will be most pivotal, especially for personal transport: I still think that battery/plug-in EVs is it.

Fuel cell vehicles are electric vehicles with a fuel cell instead of a battery. The fundamental difference is that plug-in battery EVs store electricity and require charging, whereas fuel cell vehicles generate electricity from gas and require re-filling.

Both need an infrastructure either to charge or to fuel, and hydrogen fuels cells would seem attractive because the infrastructure (fuel stations) already exist, and it would be cheap to add another fuel, just as they added unleaded and then LPG in the past. Plus thy don’t have the existing range restrictions that EVs currently suffer.

But I would argue that the charging network for EVs already exists too: it’s called the grid – electricity is practically everywhere. (more…)