Michelin is providing a bit more information on the HY-LIGHT hydrogen fuel cell concept car, including a simplified schematic (at right). Developed in partnership with the Paul Scherrer Institut (PSI), the HY-LIGHT made its debut at the Challenge Bibendum in Shanghai this year. (Earlier post.)
The lightweight car (850 kg) uses Michelin’s Active Wheel units—electric traction motors combined with an active electric suspension—mounted in the front wheels. Supercapacitors store the electricity generated by braking.
Michelin designed the HY-LIGHT with the expectation of using H2 and O2 generated via electrolysis and stored in separate on-board tanks at up to 350 bar (5,000 psi).
With pressurized oxygen stored on-board, the HY-LIGHT fuel cell does not require an on-board compressor to pump air through it to provide the source of oxygen through the fuel cell. Compressors add weight and power consumption, and ambient air contains components the fuel cell doesn’t require, such as nitrogen and CO2.