April 2005, No. 43 Fuel cells
and hydrogen at the Hannover Fair.
During the one week of the Hannover
Fair, several news in the fuel cells and hydrogen business were presented.
IdaTech showed a 250 W system fuelled with methanol. The system includes a
reformer to supply the fuel cell with hydrogen. Masterflex and Hawk Bikes
E&M are working on a Cargobike concept, also with a 250 W system.
March 2005, No. 42 Micro PEMFC
from NTT for portable applications.
The Japanese company NTT has
developed a micro fuel cell based on PEMFC technology for portable
applications. A prototype for a mobile phone using hydrogen as fuel has
already been presented and tested.
March 2005, No. 41 Intelligent
Energy presents fuel cell motorbike.
Intelligent Energy has presented a
fuel cell motorbike with a top speed of 80 km/h. The motorbike called
"ENV-Emission Neutral Vehicle" is equipped with a 1 kW PEMFC and
weighs only 80 kg. Hydrogen is stored in a high pressure tank.
March 2005, No. 40 GM signs
agreements with DOE and Sandia National Laboratory.
GM has signed two agreements
supporting their fuel cell activities. First, DOE agrees to support GMs
development of fuel cell automobiles with USD 44 million over the next
five years. GM will additionally invest the same amount. Secondly, GM is
going to cooperate with Sandia National Laboratory on the development of
hydrogen storage tanks. The target is to achieve an equivalent driving
range to a tank of petrol.
February 2005, No. 39 German
hydrogen highway planned by Linde.
With around 40 hydrogen refueling
stations, Berlin, Leipzig, Munich, Stuttgart and Cologne will be linked to
one of the longest hydrogen highways. A total length of about 1800 km with
hydrogen refueling stations at each 50 km is planned, and the total costs
are estimated to Euro 30 million.
February 2005, No. 38 Medis
Technologies announces mass production of portable FC.
The fuel cell company Medis
Technologies has announced that it will be able to mass produce its
“Power Packs” fuel cell systems already in 2006. Instead of methanol
or hydrogen as fuel, a mixture of borohydride - alkaline and alcohols is
used. The “Power Packs” are portable auxiliary power sources providing
power to operate and charge cell phones, digital cameras, PDAs, MP3
players, hand-held video games and other devices with similar power
February 2005, No. 36 Hydrogen
storage in magnesium powder.
Researchers at the Dutch university
Delft have suggested to store hydrogen as magnesium hydrides (MgH2) for
fuel cell powered automobiles. Due to the light weight of magnesium, a
gravimetric hydrogen storage capacity up to 6.5 wt% is possible. One
problem is the high temperature of 300-400°C required to release the
hydrogen from the hydride.
January 2005, No. 35 Coordination
of European fuel cell and hydrogen research.
The EU has launched a project with
the aim of coordinating the fuel cell and hydrogen research in Europe,
"Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Co-ordination HY-CO". 18 countries and
regions are participating in this project, which is connected to the
European Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Technology Platform.
January 2005, No. 34 Honda to
lease fuel cell cars to the general public.
By the end of this year, Honda will
lease its fuel cell cars to the general public. This is a further step
towards the commercialisation of fuel cell products. The possible
geographical areas will be limited by the available hydrogen
General Motors has revealed their
new generation fuel cell car, called the Sequel. Compared to the Hy-Wire
concept it is more conventional and with an improved performance and
operating range to the previous cars.
December 2004, No. 31 Fuel
cell organisations in Germany join forces.
20 of the major German fuel cell
organisations have joined forces as a reaction to the increasing
international competition in this field. The new organisation, called
"Brennstoffzellen-Bündnis Deutschland (BZB)", will work on both
the political and the industrial level to promote the fuel cell activities
December 2004, No. 30 PEMFC in
NASA has received a 5 kW PEMFC stack
from the Hydrogenics Corporation for potential use in space applications.
The first stack will be tested to investigate the suitability in a closed
hydrogen-oxygen cycle, as a part of a regenerative energy storage
December 2004, No. 29 WBZU
fuel cell education program 2005 available.
The 2005 fuel cell education program
of the WBZU (Germany) is available. In addition to workshops and seminars,
presentations and exhibitions are also offered. A full overview of the
activities can be found on their website.
December 2004, No. 28 Fuel
cell buses in operation during the soccer world cup in Germany 2006.
Fuel cell buses from the Hydrogenics
Enkat GmbH (in the Canadian Hydrogenics Corporation) will operate in three
German cities during the soccer world cup in 2006. Each bus has the
capacity to carry about 30 persons, and they will be operating in
Gelsenkirchen, Dortmund and Cologne.
November 2004, No. 27 Liquid
and gaseous hydrogen filling station in Berlin.
BP/Aral opened the worlds largest
hydrogen filling station in Berlin on November 12. With both liquid and
gaseous hydrogen, it has the capacity to refuel 100 cars per day. Liquid
hydrogen is transported to the station, while gaseous hydrogen is produced
on the site by electrolysis. The tank station is part of the European
"Clean Energy Partnership" project.
November 2004, No. 26 Hydrogen
filling station in North America.
Shell Hydrogen presented the first
combined hydrogen and gasoline station in North America. Together with GM,
they are demonstrating the use of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles and
refueling infrastructure. Both gaseous and liquid hydrogen are available
at the station in northeast Washington, D.C., where 6 of GMs fuel cell
vehicles are operating.
November 2004, No. 25 IdaTech
presents 150 W portable fuel cell system.
IdaTech presented a 150 W portable
fuel cell system at the Fuel Cell Seminar in San Antonio, Texas, USA. It
includes an onboard reformer for the liquid methanol-water fuel. The
prototype was developed for the US Army, but will also be available for
October 2004, No. 24 Masterflex
AG and Swizzbee to cooperate on E-Bike.
The German company Masterflex and
the E-Bike manufacturer Swizzbee from Switzerland have signed an agreement
on development of fuel cells for electric bikes. The first step is to
develop a special fuel cell system for the swizzbee 50c, which already
next year is to be built in a small fleet for testing.
October 2004, No. 23 Nokia
Bluetooth-Headsets operating on DMFC.
Mobile phone manufacturer Nokia has
developed headsets which are powered with 66 mW direct methanol fuel
cells. At the moment these are being tested by the company's own employees.
Instead of the 4 hours talk-time with a battery, up to 10 hours are
possible before methanol has to be refilled.
September 2004, No. 21 Hydrogen
available on a public BP station in Singapore.
Next to conventional petrol it is
now possible to fill hydrogen at a public BP station in Singapore. The
70 kg of hydrogen available per day is sufficient to supply 20 cars
and 2 busses. The pump is delivered by Air Products.
September 2004, No. 20 Fuel
cell submarine in operation.
HDW (Howaldtswerke-Deutsche Werft
AG) launched the first fuel cell powered submarine, U33. U33
is a class 212 A submarine, and the major advantages compared to standard
submarines are considerably longer runtime under water and more silent
operation. The Italian, Greek and Portuguese navy have all shown interest
in this type of submarine.
August 2004, No. 19 20 MW hydrogen
power plant planned in Italy by 2007.
Italy's largest electricity producer, Enel
SpA, announced that they are planning a 20 MW hydrogen power plant by
2007. The hydrogen will be produced as an industrial by-product at plants
which are to be built next to the power plant and from a coal gasification
plant. Approximately 4500 - 5000 tons of hydrogen fuel will be needed per
August 2004, No. 18 Smart Fuel Cell to
present its new SFC A50 on the Caravan Salon in August.
The German company Smart Fuel Cell will
present its second fuel cell product on the Caravan Salon in Düsseldorf,
Germany, in August. This time a 50 W DMFC system guarantees 100 ampere hours
per day, a significant improvement from the first SFC A25. The complete
system is about the size of a suit case and weights around 7 kg.
July 2004, No. 17 Norway presents the
world's first autonomous hydrogen society.
From the beginning of July, the ten
households of the island Utsira in Norway will become independent of the
electricity from the mainland. Two windmills are sufficient to produce
enough power to the inhabitants and to produce hydrogen at the same time.
While the excess electricity is transferred to the net, the hydrogen is
stored to be used later in a fuel cell or a generator in case of periods
with less wind.
July 2004, No. 16 Mass production of
MCFC stationary power plants in 2006.
The German developer of the HotModule Fuel
Cell, MTU CFC Solutions, announced that they will begin mass production of
the 250 kW systems in 2006. From 2007 around 100 units per year are
expected to be sold.
July 2004, No. 15 Voller Energy
presents an updated portable power unit.
An improved version of the portable power
unit VE100 has been presented by Voller Energy Ltd. The total system with
an average power of 100 watts has a volume of only 16 liters and weights 6
kg. Included is also a LPG (Liquid Petroleum Gas) reformer which makes it
possible to use propane and butane as well as hydrogen as fuel.
June 2004, No. 14 Norwegian Hydrogen Commission presents its report on future hydrogen program.
The government-appointed Hydrogen Commission on the 1st of June handed over its
Hydrogen Report detailing how to best develop hydrogen as a future energy carrier in
Norway to the Minister of Petroleum and Energy, Einar Steensnæs, and Minister of
Transportation and Communication, Torild Skogsholm. The report recommends four
concrete areas for Norway to focus its efforts - environmental friendly production of
hydrogen from natural gas, on becoming an early user of hydrogen-powered motor
vehicles, developing hydrogen storage capacities and cultivating a hydrogen technology
industry. To reach the goals mentioned in the report, a 10-year development program with
a funding between EUR 100-120 million is recommended.
June 2004, No. 13 First public
integrated hydrogen filling station planned in Berlin.
The German company Aral AG plans to open the
worlds first public integrated hydrogen filling station in Berlin. In
addition to its hydrogen filling stations on the Munich airport, it will
be possible to fill hydrogen at an existing diesel and gasoline filling
station in the capitol by the end of this year.
June 2004, No. 12 Bilateral Agreement
between USA and Norway on Energy.
On May 22nd U.S. Secretary of Energy Spencer
Abraham and Norwegian Minister of Petroleum and Energy Einar Steensnæs
signed a Mutual Agreement of Understanding (MOU) on energy. Among the
topics mentioned are carbon sequestration, hydrogen and fuel cells. The intention
of the MOU is to advance energy research and development projects.
June 2004, No. 11 HyNet's European
Hydrogen Energy Roadmap.
HyNet (The European Thematic Network on
Hydrogen) has now finished its report "Towards a European Hydrogen Energy Roadmap".
The report covers all issues on the introduction of hydrogen energy in
Europe, hydrogen production and infrastructure, hydrogen end-use and
storage, hydrogen codes, standards and regulations, socio-economic and
policy in building the hydrogen supply and infrastructure and
dissemination and public outreach. Two of the major findings was the
urgent need for public education and the large investments required for
the hydrogen infrastructure.
The intention is to place up to 30 fuel cell
powered cars in the region Sacramento, Orlando and Detriot, and build a
hydrogen fueling station network to support them. BP will evaluate several
technologies for hydrogen production, both near-term commercial feasible
and future possibilities. Already by the end of this year the assembly of
the fuel cell vehicles by Ford will begin.
On May 3rd the Fuel Cell Marathon arranged by
GM Europe (Opel) starts in Hammerfest, Norway. During this summer the
fuel cell car, a HydroGen 3 (Opel Zaphira), will drive 10000 kilometers all the way to Portugal. On
its way through Europe 14 exhibitions will be arranged to give information
about fuel cell propulsion and the use of hydrogen as a source of
May 2004, No. 8 Hannover Fair Hydrogen
and Fuel Cell Group Exhibit.
From April 19th to 24th the Hydrogen and Fuel
Cell Group Exhibit took place for the tenth time in Hannover. The over 100
exhibitors showed their latest developments in the field of hydrogen and
fuel cells. Representatives from all application categories were present,
portable, mobile as well as stationary systems and components.
March 2004, No. 7 New EU hydrogen and
fuel cell Quick Start initiative.
The European Research Commissioner Philippe
Busquin presented current and future key EU initiatives for a transition
from a fossil fuel-based economy to a hydrogen-based one at a conference
in Brussels. In addition to the €500 million invested through the 6th EU
Research Framework Program (FP6 2002-2006), an indicative €2.8 bn public
and private funding is earmarked to the so called "Quick Start"
initiative over the next ten years.
March 2004, No. 6 Portable fuel cells
presented at CeBIT.
At the CeBIT in Hannover new portable fuel
cells for longer operation of small electronic devices are presented. Both
Toshiba and Smart Fuel Cell have further developed their prototype direct
methanol fuel cell systems and are promising commercialisation in the near
March 2004, No. 5 Hydrogen filling
station network in California.
200 hydrogen filling stations will be needed
in order to fulfill the campaign promises of governor Arnold
Schwarzenegger in California. The total costs for one station every 20
miles are estimated to 100 million dollars. At the same time President
Bush has requested 227 million dollars for the Energy Department's
hydrogen program for the year 2005.
March 2004, No. 4 Acceptance study of
Combined with the introduction of fuel cell
buses in many countries, an acceptance study of the general public
perception of hydrogen buses in public transport is performed. The
selected cities are London, Luxembourg, Berlin, Perth and Oakland. In a
preliminary report the need for more information about hydrogen and fuel
cells is revealed.
February 2004, No. 3 Virtual Fuel Cell
The German heating appliance manufacturer
Vaillant has, together with Plug Power, started the testing of a virtual
fuel cell power plant consisting of 31 units. Each unit supply 4.6 kW
electrical power and 11 kW heat and are developed for residental and small
February 2004, No. 2 New Polymer
Membranes for Direct Methanol Fuel Cells
Both PolyFuel and Fujitsu Laboratories have
announced a breakthrough in the membrane development for direct methanol
fuel cells (DMFC). The main problem has been the crossover of methanol
through the membrane, which leads to loss in cell voltage and loss of
fuel. New membrane materials with improved properties will make it
possible to operate portable DMFCs on a more concentrated methanol
January 2004, No. 1 12 Mio. Euro to
Smart Fuel Cell for further portable DMFC commercialisation.
The German fuel cell company Smart Fuel Cell
has received another 12 Mio Euro from investors to continue their work on
portable DMFC systems. Their first commersially available system was
introduced spring 2003. With this new funding Smart Fuel Cell
will be able to focus even more on market introduction of portable DMFC
December 2003, No. 5 European Portable
Fuel Cell Study.
The first European Portable Fuel Cell Study
includes an overview of research and development activities in all
European countries, a review of the portable fuel cell technology as well
as information about financial support within the EU. The report can be
ordered at firstname.lastname@example.org.
December 2003, No. 4 International
hydrogen partnership and cooperation.
An agreement between the U.S. Department of
Energy and Ministers from the European Union about an international
hydrogen partnership has been signed. The main goal is to coordinate
hydrogen research and hydrogen technology development across the boarders.
At the same time a collaboration between american, european and japanese
fuel cell organisations whas been annonced.
October 2003, No. 3 First hydrogen fuel
cell buses operating in Reykjavik, Iceland.
DaimlerChrysler delivered this month the
first two hydrogen fuel cell buses within the frames of the European ECTOS
project in Reykjavik. They will operate in daily city traffic for two
years to demonstrate the use of fuel cells in public transportation
system. The hydrogen filling station developed by Hydro Electrolysers in
co-operation with Shell Hydrogen will supply the fuel.
October 2003, No. 2 Canadian government invests $ 215 million
in hydrogen and fuel cells.
Just after US-president Bush announcing a
multi million dollar fuel cell program, the Canadian government strengthen
their own hydrogen and fuel cell industry. Canada is recognized as one of
the world leading countries in fuel cell technology, and with this new
investment the government is focusing on more demonstrating units, cost
reduction and to establish a hydrogen infrastructure.
For more information see Fuel Cell Today.
September 2003, No. 1 First Swedish
hydrogen fuelling station.
Swedens first hydrogen fuelling station was unveiled on September 11th in Malmö. The electrolyser unit
was supplied by Stuart Energy Systems (Canada) to Sydkraft AB, and is
powered by wind generated power. With a capacity of about 80 kg hydrogen
per day, it will mainly provide hydrogen/natural gas to the city bus fleet.