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UK R&D project increases fuel cell power density by 30%

Wed, 04/17/2013 - 18:36 -- Editor

Enhanced Fuel Cell Systems, led by the UK’s Intelligent Energy, has demonstrated an increase in fuel cell system power density of more than 30%.

The £2.8m project, part-funded by the UK Technology Strategy Board,has also demonstrated together with reliable cold-start performance at temperatures down to -20°C.

Running from December 2009 to December 2012, focused on enhancing the reliability, durability and performance of Intelligent Energy’s class leading fuel cell engines, as well as reducing system weight.

An increase in power density of more than 30% was achieved by the project team, delivering an improvement in power output from 30kW to 40kW for the chosen test system without increasing system mass or size.

Additionally, through the introduction of a new coolant module developed specifically for the project, cold start performance was consistently achieved at temperatures down to -20°C.

Within the project, Intelligent Energy worked to improve the overall design and integration of the enhanced fuel cell system with Ricardo acting as the customer, providing a comprehensive automotive specification and sign-off at the end of the project.

TRW Conekt validated the integrity of the fuel cell modules through vibration and environmental testing, helping to identify and prevent potential problems.

Dyson Technology developed a compact, high efficiency compressor for air delivery into the fuel cell system based on their digital motor technology, which was engineered to integrate into an existing stack enclosure, a component already designed for mass production