Picture of the fuel cell with with the Renault Kangoo ZE van it was fitted to

Revolve Technologies unveils first PCB fuel cell range extender

Published:  24 September, 2018

Revolve Technologies says it has developed a new fuel cell using a printed circuit board (PCB) which will drastically reduce system costs.

This is the first time a PCB-based fuel cell has been developed for use in an automotive environment. Revolve Technologies say that compared with conventional systems, the PCB fuel cell stack will not only reduce system costs but also reduce weight and provide a more flexible form factor.

A Renault Kangoo ZE van with a PCB fuel cell range extender was displayed at the Cenex Low Carbon Vehicle Event at the Millbrook Proving Ground earlier this month.

Revolve Technologies say that with the PCB fuel cell fitted, an additional range of around 80 miles can be expected on a NEDC cycle with 1.7kg of hydrogen on board, and by fitting additional hydrogen storage capacity, the range can be further extended.

On the demonstration model, the fuel cell – along with the control system and electronics – is integrated on the vehicle roof under a covered enclosure. The hydrogen storage tank is currently in the loading bay, although a future development could see the tank relocated to the roof.

The fuel cell range extender module is designed as an aftermarket kit for all commercial pure EVs. The technology can also be adopted by OEMs in other pure EV segments.

Revolve Technologies worked with its partners on this project and carried out the system integration, benchmarking and testing at its HQ in Brentwood. Bramble Energy was responsible for fuel cell development and manufacture, UCL provided fuel cell testing and manufacturing support, STI performed the electronics development and manufacturing consultancy HSSMI worked on manufacturing upscaling.

The PCB fuel cell vehicle integration project is part of an Innovate UK-funded project, which has taken just over a year to reach fruition.

‘This project met all our expectations”, said Paul Turner, engineering director at Revolve Technologies.

‘We were delighted to be able to show this exciting outcome at the LCV Show, and we received a very enthusiastic reception.’

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