FuelCellsWorks

Industry News & Information Leader

SFC EFOY ReliOn Hydrogenics Honda Plug Power Toyota BMW

Archives

Ballard signs deal with WEG to develop fuel cell market in Brazil

VANCOUVER, CANADA– Ballard Power Systems (NASDAQ: BLDP) (TSX: BLD) today announced that it has signed a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with WEG Industries (Brazil), a multinational corporation headquartered in Jaragua do Sul, Brazil, to collaborate on product and market development of clean energy fuel cell products.

“WEG is committed to expanding into new clean energy-related businesses,” said Mr. Umberto Gabbato, Managing Director of WEG Automation. “We see the work with Ballard as consistent with our desire to ensure the smallest impact on the environment and, furthermore, we see potential for fuel cells ranging from public transit to mining and other critical power applications.”

WEG Industries operates in the worldwide electric engineering, power and automation technology areas. The company’s 24,000 employees produce electric motors, generators, transformers, drives and coatings in 9 countries. WEG is present with plants, branches or representatives in 100 countries.

John Sheridan, Ballard’s President and CEO said, “This agreement with WEG Industries will be an important enabler for increased fuel cell product traction in the fast-growing Brazil market. There are a number of important commercial applications that we will focus on and evaluate with WEG.”

Under this agreement, the companies will work to identify and evaluate market opportunities for hydrogen fuel cell products and services in applications related to WEG’s businesses and technologies in such vertical markets as bus, rail and mining.

About Ballard Power Systems
Ballard Power Systems (TSX: BLD) (NASDAQ: BLDP) provides clean energy fuel cell products enabling optimized power systems for a range of applications. Products are based on proprietary esencia™ technology, ensuring incomparable performance, durability and versatility. To learn more about Ballard, please visit www.ballard.com.

February 7, 2012 - 10:00 PM No Comments

Air Products’ Hydrogen Technology to Surpass Fueling of Over 1,000 Material Handling Fuel Cell Units Daily at U.S. Customer Warehouses

Recent Addition of a Customer with Warehouse Fleets in Four States Will Push Air Products Over the 1,000-Lift Milestone

LEHIGH VALLEY, Pa., Feb. 7, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — Today Air Products APD +0.07% helps businesses move consumer goods purchased and used every day by providing the hydrogen fueling and infrastructure to power nearly 1,000 material handling fuel cell units operating in warehouses across the United States. And when Air Products soon brings on stream its industry leading technology to fuel the material handling units of a customer with warehouse locations in Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts and Texas, it will easily eclipse the 1,000 unit milestone.
“We are the leader in providing hydrogen fueling and the related infrastructure to the material handling market. Today we are fueling nearly 1,000 pieces of material handling equipment, and we are refueling them safely on a daily basis. We are very proud of this accomplishment and with future installations already under contract, doubling the number of units is already within sight,” said Ed Kiczek, global director – Hydrogen Energy Systems at Air Products. “It goes without saying that our technology’s consistent performance and reliability, along with the environmental sustainability and productivity benefits we provide have been recognized by this market application.”
Kiczek added that the early support in demonstration projects partially funded by the United States Department of Energy was important to proving the benefits of the technology. Details on Air Products’ hydrogen fueling station technologies and projects are provided at www.airproducts.com/h2energy .
There are many advantages to using hydrogen-powered forklifts and material handling equipment. Hydrogen-powered equipment only needs refueling once or twice daily, depending on use, and does not require change-out downtime while traditional battery-powered equipment is taken out of operation for battery replacement or recharging approximately every four to six hours. Hydrogen-powered equipment provides consistent power strength during use and does not experience decreased performance or wear down as battery units do when nearing change-out or recharge time. Additionally, unlike battery-powered forklifts, hydrogen-powered fuel cells are not adversely impacted by temperature when operating in coolers and freezers. Further, hydrogen-powered equipment is more environmentally friendly and does not involve lead-acid battery storage or disposal issues.
Many of the material handling units being fueled by Air Products include Plug Power’s PLUG +12.75% GenDrive® hydrogen fuel cell power units. The GenDrive systems can be quickly refueled in just minutes, completely eliminating the need to change, store, charge and maintain multiple lead acid batteries for each lift.
“Plug Power has captured the leadership role in manufacturing, shipping and deploying GenDrive fuel cell units to commercially viable material handling customer sites,” said Andy Marsh, CEO at Plug Power. “Plug Power holds over 85% of this market. And, as referenced by Air Products, continuing to secure multi-site material handling customers only further proves the reliability and value-add of the hydrogen-powered GenDrive product to the customer.”

LEHIGH VALLEY, Pa.– Today Air Products APD helps businesses move consumer goods purchased and used every day by providing the hydrogen fueling and infrastructure to power nearly 1,000 material handling fuel cell units operating in warehouses across the United States. And when Air Products soon brings on stream its industry leading technology to fuel the material handling units of a customer with warehouse locations in Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts and Texas, it will easily eclipse the 1,000 unit milestone.

“We are the leader in providing hydrogen fueling and the related infrastructure to the material handling market. Today we are fueling nearly 1,000 pieces of material handling equipment, and we are refueling them safely on a daily basis. We are very proud of this accomplishment and with future installations already under contract, doubling the number of units is already within sight,” said Ed Kiczek, global director – Hydrogen Energy Systems at Air Products. “It goes without saying that our technology’s consistent performance and reliability, along with the environmental sustainability and productivity benefits we provide have been recognized by this market application.”

Kiczek added that the early support in demonstration projects partially funded by the United States Department of Energy was important to proving the benefits of the technology. Details on Air Products’ hydrogen fueling station technologies and projects are provided at www.airproducts.com/h2energy .

There are many advantages to using hydrogen-powered forklifts and material handling equipment. Hydrogen-powered equipment only needs refueling once or twice daily, depending on use, and does not require change-out downtime while traditional battery-powered equipment is taken out of operation for battery replacement or recharging approximately every four to six hours. Hydrogen-powered equipment provides consistent power strength during use and does not experience decreased performance or wear down as battery units do when nearing change-out or recharge time. Additionally, unlike battery-powered forklifts, hydrogen-powered fuel cells are not adversely impacted by temperature when operating in coolers and freezers. Further, hydrogen-powered equipment is more environmentally friendly and does not involve lead-acid battery storage or disposal issues.

Many of the material handling units being fueled by Air Products include Plug Power’s PLUG GenDrive® hydrogen fuel cell power units. The GenDrive systems can be quickly refueled in just minutes, completely eliminating the need to change, store, charge and maintain multiple lead acid batteries for each lift.

“Plug Power has captured the leadership role in manufacturing, shipping and deploying GenDrive fuel cell units to commercially viable material handling customer sites,” said Andy Marsh, CEO at Plug Power. “Plug Power holds over 85% of this market. And, as referenced by Air Products, continuing to secure multi-site material handling customers only further proves the reliability and value-add of the hydrogen-powered GenDrive product to the customer.”

February 7, 2012 - 12:21 PM No Comments

Intelligent Energy and Suzuki Motor Corporation Establish Joint Venture Company to Develop and Manufacture Fuel Cell Systems

Intelligent Energy’s Chief Executive Dr Henri Winand presents Suzuki Chairman and Chief Executive Osamu Suzuki with a commemorative plaque marking the formation of Smile FC System Corporation.

Loughborough, UK-– Intelligent Energy, the global clean power systems company, and the Suzuki Motor Corporation, have today announced the creation of a joint venture company called SMILE FC System Corporation, to develop and manufacture air-cooled fuel cell systems for a range of industry sectors. The joint venture also includes a non-exclusive license agreement that gives Suzuki access to Intelligent Energy’s class-leading fuel cell technology for its next generation of environmentally friendly fuel cell vehicles.

Under the terms of the contract, both companies will take a 50 percent stake in the joint venture. SMILE FC System Corporation will be led by Mr. Osamu Honda, Executive Vice President and representative director for Suzuki Motor Corporation, who will become President of the JV. SMILE FC System Corporation will be headquartered in Hamamatsu City, Shizuoka, with operations initially based in Yokohama.

“Suzuki Motor Corporation has been developing fuel cell vehicles with Intelligent Energy since 2006, and this successful relationship has led to the formation of SMILE FC System Corporation,” explained Mr. Honda. “I believe that we can accelerate the commercialisation of fuel cell vehicles through this joint venture with Intelligent Energy.”

The agreement represents good value for both parties, enabling Suzuki cost-effective access to Intelligent Energy’s advanced fuel cell technology through partnering and licensing, thereby avoiding the higher costs associated with in-house development. Intelligent Energy will benefit from Suzuki’s production expertise and the emerging Japanese supply chain to jointly develop the next generation of automotive standard air-cooled fuel cell systems.

Phil Caldwell, newly appointed Board Member of SMILE FC System Corporation and Business Development Director at Intelligent Energy commented, “This joint venture is the latest exciting development in the successful relationship between Intelligent Energy and Suzuki, which has previously resulted in the Crosscage motorcycle and the Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter. It is a big step towards the mass production of automotive fuel cell systems.” Equipped with Intelligent Energy’s air-cooled fuel cells, the Crosscage and Burgman motorcycles were exhibited at the 2007 and 2009 Tokyo Motor Show, and in 2011, the Fuel Cell Burgman Scooter became the world’s first fuel cell vehicle to achieve European Union Whole Vehicle Type Approval (WVTA).

“Combining Intelligent Energy’s market-leading fuel cell system technology with Suzuki’s mass production capabilities and supply chain excellence will accelerate the deployment, long term scalability and applicability of fuel cells for the next generation of eco cars, and other market segments,” explained Dr Henri Winand, Chief Executive, Intelligent Energy. “This non-exclusive agreement with the Suzuki Motor Corporation also provides further validation of our ‘design once, deploy many times’ proprietary technology and mutually beneficial partnering business model.”


Osamu Honda, Executive Vice President of the Suzuki Motor Corporation (left), and Dr. Henri Winand, Chief Executive of Intelligent Energy (right), shortly after signing the agreement to create SMILE FC System Corporation.

About SMILE FC System Corporation

SMILE FC System Corporation Board:

- Osamu Honda, President and Representative Director (and Executive Vice President and Representative Director of Suzuki Motor Corporation); – Masataka Yamakawa, Vice President and Representative Director (and Representative Director, IE Japan Ltd); – Ichizo Aoyama, Board Member (and Managing Director and Executive Director at Suzuki Motor Corporation); – Phil Caldwell, Board Member (and Business Development Director at Intelligent Energy Ltd); – Kunio Nakamura, Auditor (and Auditor at Suzuki Motor Corporation).

The ratio of capital contribution to SMILE FC System Corporation is as follows: SMC (50%), IEHP (50%).

The SMILE FC System Corporation HQ is located at 300, Takatsuka-cho, Minami-ku, Hamamatsu-city, Shizuoka. The place of business for the corporation is 2-1, Sakuranamiki, tuduki-ku, Yokohama-city, Kanagawa.

About Intelligent Energy
Intelligent Energy is a leading clean power systems company with a globally scalable business, operating in the motive, stationary power and consumer electronics sectors. Our proprietary fuel cell technologies are designed for the mass market products of some of the world’s leading companies. Intelligent Energy continues to accelerate the commercial introduction of its technologies into very large and growing markets based on sound yet cost effective operations and partnerships. Intelligent Energy’s successes include building the world’s first purpose built fuel cell motorbike, and with partner Suzuki, the first ever fuel cell vehicle to achieve European Union type approval. The company also supplied the system to Boeing which powered the world’s first manned fuel cell aircraft.

February 7, 2012 - 7:50 AM No Comments

Zentric, Inc. Signs MOU with OneEnergy for Fuel Cell Battery Technology

PHOENIX— Zentric, Inc. (otcqb:ZNTR) William Tien, President of Zentric, Inc. is pleased to announce that Zentric, Inc. has entered into a Memorandum Of Understanding (”MOU”) with OneEnergy Sdn Bhd, a privately held Research and Development company operating in Malaysia who specialize in a solution for Next Generation Power Supply Systems.

Mr. Tien remarked, “Our agreement with OneEnergy provides Zentric with a proven R&D partner as well as leading edge technology for Fuel Cell batteries that we can now commercialize through our global sales efforts. In particular the Fuel Cell battery is a perfect solution for application with electric vehicles as the battery technology enables the car to travel much farther on the same charge significantly improving its performance.”

Mr. Ken Chua, Executive Director of OneEnergy states, “Zentric is the ideal partner for OneEnergy as they become a leader in the production and distribution of ‘best in class’ patented battery technologies. In particular, their strategic partnership in electric car manufacturer Alpha Lujo, Inc. will provide the perfect showcase and application for our Fuel Cell technology.”

Mr. Jeff Mak, CEO of Zentric, Inc. adds, “OneEnergy provides Zentric with several solutions including a distribution partner for all of our products in Singapore and Malaysia. As a technology and development company it is critical for Zentric to continue to make improvements and technological advances and partnering with OneEnergy greatly improves our R&D capabilities.”

For further information on Zentric, please go to: www.zntr.com

February 7, 2012 - 6:26 AM No Comments

An Italian fuel cell maker that feeds itself pushes into emerging markets

By Siobhan Crise-Bloomberg

Electro Power
Electro Power Systems is wooing would-be clients with what it says are the first fuel cell systems that don’t require an external fuel supply. Photographer: Amani Willett/Gallerystock.com

As demand for mobile phones in developing countries explodes, telecom operators are investing hundreds of millions of dollars in infrastructure at a rapid pace. The number of base stations, which anchor towers and house equipment, will reach nearly 2.2 million in 2012, about double since 2007, according to GSMA, a mobile operators trade group in London. Each station requires a backup power source to keep network service going in case of a power outage.

Telecoms have long used lead-acid batteries and diesel generators for backup power. Now a dozen or so fuel cell makers are trying to persuade them to use their alternative systems. They say fuel cells, based on a century-old technology, are more reliable, perform longer, and are cleaner than traditional backup sources.

To distinguish itself from the pack, Electro Power Systems, a 7-year-old manufacturer in the northern Italian city of Turin, is wooing would-be clients with what it says are the first fuel cell systems that don’t require an external fuel supply. Its systems bundle together fuel cells and an electrolyzer, another veteran technology, to generate their own fuel, hydrogen. The company’s most recent innovation: hooking the system to wind turbines and solar panels to harness their energy to make the hydrogen.

Developing an all-in-one system that uses energy from renewables to produce and store hydrogen “is the holy grail for a lot of [fuel cell] companies,” says Kerry-Ann Adamson, a director at cleantech research and consulting firm Pike Research, which is headquarted in Boulder,Colorado. ElectroPS is the only company with “a commercially available unit in that package,” she says. “They are leading the way in that area.”

Housed in a cube-shaped cabinet that measures about 1 cubic meter, the ElectroPS system works like this: When there’s a blackout, the fuels cells kick in, generating electricity and water from hydrogen and oxygen. The water is stored in tanks until the grid comes back on or, in the newest iteration, when a renewable source is available. Then the electrolzyer passes an electrical current through the water to produce more hydrogen and oxygen, which is kept in vessels until needed by the fuel cells during the next blackout. The self-contained system requires little maintenance beyond an annual top-up of water.

Adamson forecasts the market for fuel cell backup units for telecom installations to balloon to $3.6 billion by 2017, from $38 million in 2010. ElectroPS had sales of $4.5 million in 2010 and $6 million in 2011, says founder and Chief Executive Adriano Marconetto, 51. He launched the company with three scientists at the Politecnico di Torino in 2005 after learning about the technology through his previous startup, an Italian designer of clean energy systems that imported fuel cells from the US The 50-employee company will become profitable in 2015, he says.

One early adopter, Telecom Italia, Italy’s largest telecom, bought its first fuel cell system from ElectroPS in 2009. It now owns 250 of the systems and will buy approximately 50 more in 2012, says Alberto Landucci, who is in charge of energy saving initiatives at Telecom Italia in Rome. He says the ElectroPS fuel cell unit is “simple, reliable,” and an improvement on traditional battery backup because it lasts longer, costs less to operate, and can work in locations with high temperatures. Diesel generators, which may be 40 percent cheaper to buy than fuel cells, ultimately cost more in fuel, soundproofing, maintenance, and pollution checks, he says.

The most expensive ElectroPS system, with power output of 12 kilowatts, or enough to back up a large base station shared by different operators, costs up to €25,000. Customers typically recoup their investment in less than three years, Marconetto says.

“The cost is up front,” says Virg Bernero, mayor of Lansing, Michigan. The city spent $35,000 on an ElectroPS unit in 2011 for backup power to a public safety radio system; a battery would have cost less than half that. “As we replace our other equipment, we would consider buying more” fuel cells when the budget allows, says Bernero, noting the long-term savings.

More than 600 installations around the world use ElectroPS fuel cells, nearly half in emerging markets, says Marconetto. ElectroPS, which sold its first system in Germany in 2007, focused on telecom operators because “they understand the importance of backup,” says Marconetto. “Soon we realized the biggest opportunities were in emerging areas, especially in Asia.” He expects the “vast majority” of future sales to come from those regions. India is adding 3 million mobile subscribers a month, according to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India.

“There’s such a colossal growth in mobile subscribers” in developing countries, says David Hart, a director at sustainable energy consulting company E4tech in Lausanne, Switzerland. Where the grid isn’t reliable and backup power is needed more frequently and for longer periods, “there’s more room for companies like EPS,” he says.

February 7, 2012 - 6:00 AM No Comments