|Westport H2ICE Fuel Injector|
Westport Innovations and Ford Motor Company will collaborate on developing and demonstrating an advanced hydrogen direct-injection fuel system for vehicles based on Westport’s hydrogen direct-injection (H2DI) technology.
The development of a practical fuel injection system for hydrogen is a key objective to Ford’s strategy in making low cost hydrogen internal combustion engine technology commercially available to the market within the next few years.
The US Department of Energy (DOE) will also be teaming with Westport and Ford on the further development of the technology.
The two-year development program will be divided into two phases. Phase one will define advanced fuel system requirements including the design of fuel injectors. Phase two will incorporate the design and manufacture of new prototype fuel systems. The Government of Canada has contributed $250,000 during phase one. (Westport Innovations is based in Vancouver, Canada.)
Both governments are viewing hydrogen-fueled internal combustion engines as a way to enable the deployment of functional hydrogen-powered vehicles, especially work vehicles, which consume large quantities of fuel.
The project is designed to allow users and technology providers to gain experience with hydrogen infrastructure while operating larger numbers of low-cost early production vehicles.
Westport’s H2DI technology has been in testing at Ford, and has shown the potential to provide high power and engine torque with diesel-like efficiency and very low emissions.
The new collaboration builds on several years of work between Ford Research and Westport starting in 1999 with natural gas engines. Ford began investigating the benefits of hydrogen direct-injection for reciprocating engines with Westport in 2003.
The development work for the next generation hydrogen engine program will take place in Westport’s technology centre in Vancouver, Ford’s test facilities in Dearborn, Michigan and the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) in Richland, Washington.