|Ballard FCvelocity module. Click to enlarge.|
Ballard Power Systems has entered into a contract for the supply of fuel cell power modules to power five zero-emission hydrogen fuel cell buses operated by the HyNor Oslo Buss group, to service the greater Oslo area.
Belgian coach manufacturer Van Hool NV has contracted with Ballard to use the company’s FCvelocity fuel cell module in the buses it will provide to the HyNor Oslo Buss group, comprising the Ruter transit agency, Akershus County Administration, Oslo Municipality and Zero, an environmental organization. Siemens will also be a participant in the project, providing electric drive systems that will draw power from the Ballard fuel cell modules. Increased volumes of fuel cell-powered buses are expected to support cost and price reductions through scale economies, enabling fuel cell solutions to compete effectively with incumbent transit technologies.
Ballard is on its 6th generation of fuel cell module. The FCvelocity – HD6 modules for heavy-duty applications such as buses comes in two ratings—75 and 150 kW—, with 240 Amps and 313 – 626 Volts. Cell efficiency is 62 – 71%.
The zero-emission 13-meter (43-foot) fuel cell buses will be put into regular passenger service by the end of 2011 and will be fueled by clean hydrogen produced locally at the Rosenholm bus depot. Hydrogen will be generated through electrolysis of water, using electrical energy from renewable sources. As a result, the Oslo bus fleet will reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 100% on a well-to-wheels basis, compared to diesel or diesel hybrid alternatives, eliminating as much as 4,000 tons of CO2 over the first five-years of use.
Over that same period, the fleet is expected to operate approximately 20,000 hours, the equivalent of 450,000 kilometers (280,000 miles) per bus. The fleet will continue operating up to ten years, with the Ruter transit agency having an option to purchase as many as five additional buses during that time.
Project funding will be provided by Norwegian state and municipal governments as well as the European Union’s Joint Technology Initiative (JTI). The JTI will accelerate development and deployment of clean technologies, including hydrogen and fuel cell-based energy systems and component technologies, helping the European Union achieve aggressive GHG reduction targets.