Editors Note: This news from a fuel-cell manufacturer will be of interest to wind advocates because the hydrogen needed by fuel cells will likely come from electrolyzing water and ideally with wind-generated power.
French company Symbio FCell manufactures fuel-cell powertrains and range extenders for cars and commercial vehicles. The producer has chosen the Ceramic MaxPhase coating from Impact Coatings for its new fuel-cell stack. The new design is expected to be ready for launch in December 2015.
Ceramic MaxPhase enhances performance and lifetime of metal bipolar plates in fuel cells. The PVD (physical vapor deposition) coating is proven state-of-the-art for both proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFC) and direct methanol fuel cells (DMFC). Offering a unique combination of low contact resistance, high corrosion resistance, and low cost, it exceeds both performance and cost reduction targets set up by the US Department of Energy.
Symbio FCell products are used as range extenders for battery powered electric vehicles, and as the main source of power for fuel cell electrical vehicles. Typical users today are commercial fleets that depart from and return to the same location, where a hydrogen gas fuel station is placed. One user of Symbio FCell’s technology is La Poste in France, targeting zero-emission and quiet city operation.
Industry expects a tipping point for automotive fuel-cell applications to occur by 2017, for private cars and small trucks. Impact Coatings supports Symbio FCell in the development of fuel cell technology for its 5 kW Range Extender and Full Power FC, including 80 to 300 kW fuel cells for trucks and heavy-duty vehicles. The new fuel cell stack, which includes the Ceramic MaxPhase coating, is planned for December 2015. Initially Impact Coatings will supply Ceramic MaxPhase as a coating service to Symbio FCell.
The companies are since 2014 partners in the COBRA fuel cell development project, funded by the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JT), under EU’s Seventh Framework Programme for Research (FP7). Other COBRA project partners are: Borit NV, CEA, CIDETEC, and INSA Lyon.
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