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Electric Vehicles Research
Posted on April 22, 2013 by  & 

Enhanced fuel cell systems

A £2.8 million development project between Intelligent Energy, Dyson Technology, Ricardo and TRW Conekt, increased power density of Intelligent Energy's fuel cell engines by more than 30%.
The fuel cell engines, delivered an improvement in power output from 30kW to 40kW without increasing system mass or size. Additionally, through the introduction of a new coolant module developed specifically for the project, cold start performance was consistently achieved at temperatures down to -20°C.
Within the project, Intelligent Energy worked to improve the overall design and integration of the enhanced fuel cell system with Ricardo acting as the customer, providing a comprehensive automotive specification and sign-off at the end of the project. TRW Conekt validated the integrity of the fuel cell modules through vibration and environmental testing, helping to identify and prevent potential problems. Dyson Technology developed a compact, high efficiency compressor (a key subsystem for air delivery into the fuel cell system) based on their digital motor technology, which was engineered to integrate into an existing stack enclosure, a component already designed for mass production.
The project team benefited from operational advice from DHL.
James Batchelor, Managing Director for Intelligent Energy's Motive Division, said: "Fuel cell systems offer one of the most promising solutions to reducing carbon emissions from road vehicles. This collaborative programme between leading industry players helps to accelerate the introduction of our automotive technology at scale with even greater levels of system power density and performance, making our fuel cell systems even more attractive to our OEM customers across the power range that they typically ask for, from below 30kW up to 200kW. With our recent stack power density improvements yet to incorporate, we expect to deliver even greater system-level performance in the near future."
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