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Plug Power and BAE Systems enter strategic partnership on hydrogen fuel cell buses

Plug Power Inc. announced a strategic framework agreement with BAE Systems, a premier supplier and integrator of low- and zero-emission electric propulsion systems and application integration. Under the framework, Plug Power and BAE Systems will collaborate to supply zero-emissions powertrains to heavy-duty transit bus OEMs in North America integrating Plug Power’s ProGen fuel cell engines into BAE Systems’ smart electric drive systems, as well as provide hydrogen and refueling infrastructure to end-customers use points.

Through this all-inclusive strategic partnership, the companies are advancing a total solution for hydrogen-powered electric buses.

Both companies have substantial global industry expertise and proven track records in the electric mobility space. With 25 years of experience driving zero-emissions solutions, BAE Systems is an established leader in power management and efficient propulsion; today, more than 13,000 of the company’s electric drive systems operate worldwide. The company was also an early advocate for hydrogen-based transit, having integrated fuel cells into its electric propulsion systems since 1998.

Plug Power, with more than 40,000 fuel cell units deployed over the past 20 years, offers modular ProGen fuel cell engines for OEM integration ranging from 30kW to 125kW. As part of its mission to provide comprehensive hydrogen solutions and an unrivaled value proposition to its customers, Plug Power has built more hydrogen refueling stations than any other company and has become the largest buyer of liquid hydrogen globally.

These companies are now leveraging their complementary capabilities to bring the sustainability, efficiency and cost advantages of green hydrogen to more cities in North America and beyond.

Hydrogen-electric powertrains enable transit fleets to operate cleanly, quietly and efficiently at extended ranges over battery electric vehicles, and with the lowest cost of ownership, the partners said. Unlike electric trams or EVs, which require extensive route infrastructure, hydrogen fuel cell buses can quickly refuel in existing city fleet facilities equipped with hydrogen dispensers.

This strategic partnership will play an instrumental role in advancing our on-road applications strategy and delivering new growth opportunities that help meet our year-end 2025 goals, including annual production of 500 tons of green hydrogen daily.

—Plug Power CEO Andy Marsh

This partnership expands both companies’ reach into the market for commercial on-road applications, as demand for zero-emission power solutions grows alongside efforts to decarbonize transportation. This framework agreement with BAE Systems also aligns with Plug Power’s global strategy to promote the adoption of hydrogen fuel cell technology in on- and off-road electric vehicle fleets.

The company earlier this year announced a memorandum of understanding with French automaker Groupe Renault to create a joint venture in electric fuel cell commercial vehicles and hydrogen turn-key solutions for customers in Europe. (earlier post)


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