Ballard signs fuel cell supply agreement with Solaris; initial order of 10 modules as range extenders for electric trolley buses
Ballard Power Systems has signed a Long-Term Sales Agreement (LTSA) with Solaris Bus & Coach, a bus OEM headquartered in Poland, for the sale and supply of fuel cell modules to support deployment of Solaris fuel cell buses in Europe. An initial order placed under the LTSA is for 10 FCveloCity-HD fuel cell modules, with deliveries planned to start in 2017.
Each 85 kilowatt FCveloCity-HD fuel cell module that has been ordered will be deployed as a range extender in a Solaris Trollino model low-floor trolley bus. Solaris has signed a contract with Rigas Satiksme, the transport operator in the city of Riga, Latvia for 10 of the Trollino trolley buses.
The FCveloCity-HD includes separate air and coolant systems for simplified and flexible integration into the electric drive system. These two discrete modules have been designed, tested and validated for transit bus and light rail applications.
The coolant sub-system delivers a water/ethylene glycol (WEG) mixture at a prescribed flow rate to the fuel cell module. Sub-system includes coolant pump, piping, control valve.
The air sub-system delivers air at a prescribed flow rate to the fuel cell stack to support the electrochemical reaction. Sub-system includes motor, controller, air compressor and freeze protection.
|Standard Solaris Trollino 18. Click to enlarge.|
The Solaris Trollino model articulated bus that will be delivered to Rigas is 18.75 meters (61.5 feet) long and is equipped with a battery (energy storage is an option on the Trollino 18 model). The onboard fuel cell module will engage as the trolley bus moves into any portion of its route that does not have catenary wiring, thereby extending the operating range of the bus.
The fuel cell module is a clean energy alternative to diesel auxiliary power units (APUs) currently used in Trollino buses allowing them to operate on short distances without external power supply—for example, the route between the depot and the beginning of electric traction.
These fuel cell buses represent a highly flexible clean energy mass transportation solution, since they will be capable of operating on routes that have no overhead or catenary wiring.
We look forward to our long-term partnership with Solaris. We believe this initial deployment of 10 buses will represent the first fuel cell-equipped trolley buses deployed anywhere in the world.—Karim Kassam, Ballard’s Vice President – Commercial
Solaris is a major European manufacturer of city, intercity and special-purpose buses as well as low-floor trams. Since the start of production in 1996, Solaris has manufactured more than 15,000 vehicles for delivery to 30 countries including Latvia, where the company has been active since 2001.