Van Hool will deliver 21 fuel cell buses under EU co-funded project
Ballard Power Systems announced that its customer Van Hool (Belgium-based bus manufacturer) has signed a grant agreement with the EU Hydrogen Fuel Cell Joint Undertaking for deployment of 21 fuel cell buses in Europe as part of the 3Emotion Program. “With this new round of funding now in-place, we look forward to expanding our successful zero-emission bus partnership with Ballard to include the roll-out of buses in additional European cities,” said Filip Van Hool, CEO of Van Hool N.V.
Ballard and Van Hool are in the process of finalizing an equipment supply agreement (ESA) for the provision by Ballard of 21 fuel cell power modules. Ballard anticipates receipt of purchase orders under the ESA that will lead to delivery of these modules to Van Hool in 2015 and 2016. There are currently 27 Van Hool fuel cell buses, powered by Ballard modules, in public transit operation and Ballard holds an estimated 80% share of the European market for fuel cell bus modules.
For these newly funded buses, Ballard will deliver its FCvelocity®-HD7 product, a next-generation fuel cell power module offering improved durability and reliability together with significant cost reduction. Product enhancements include reduced parts count, fewer moving parts, integrated air compressor and coolant pump along with lower parasitic load. The module will also utilize fuel cell stacks manufactured through a high-volume, low-cost process.
The EU Hydrogen Fuel Cell Joint Undertaking is a public-private partnership supporting research, technological development and demonstration activities in fuel cell and hydrogen technologies, providing subsidies for eligible projects through a cost share mechanism. Under Framework FP7, the European Commission and industry have each committed €470 million through the 2008-14 period. The next program, Horizon 2020, extends this initiative to 2020 with an incremental budget of €700 million.