As part of its current hydrogen research project SMART-H2 (earlier post), Icelandic New Energy plans to launch a whale-watching ship equipped with a hydrogen fuel cell auxiliary power unit (APU) on 24 April. The ship shuts down its main diesel engines when passengers are watching whales; the APU will provide power for lighting systems.
The APU system for the ship is based on a 10-15 kW fuel cell module developed by H2 Logic in Denmark and will contain a Ballard fuel cell stack. Designed in Iceland, the system will be tested in operation for 18 months with the goal of understanding the implications for a hydrogen system on the rough sea conditions in the North Atlantic.
(H2 Logic recently signed a strategic supply agreement with Ballard Power Systems. Under the two-year agreement, Ballard will supply fuel cell stacks for H2 Logic fuel cell hybrid systems for the materials handling market.)
In conjunction with the launching of the ship, the North Atlantic Hydrogen Association is hosting a mini conference the day before.
The other two main components of SMART-H2 are the testing of hydrogen passenger cars (Quantum Technologies Worldwide, Inc. is providing ten hydrogen-fueled Prius hybrids as part of the project) and a research path based on data collected in the three-year hydrogen bus as well as the upcoming demonstrations. Eleven hydrogen cars have been in service since 2007 as part of the SMART-H2 effort.