The second stop for the successor to Hyundai’s ix35 Fuel Cell was neither Detroit nor Tokyo but Offenbach, home to the automaker’s German and European headquarters. In mid-January, seven weeks prior to its official European premiere in Geneva, the Nexo was shown to a select group of journalists in this city by the river Main in the German state of Hesse.
The 14th International Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Expo took place Feb. 28 through March 2 in Tokyo, Japan. According to the organizers, it is the largest hydrogen and fuel cell show in the world. One regular exhibitor over the past several years has been H2BZ-Initiative Hessen, the hydrogen and fuel cell initiative from the German state of Hesse.
Scientists working for the Institute of Combustion Technology at the Stuttgart-based German Aerospace Center, also known as the DLR, are developing new laser-based methods to investigate combustion processes in gas turbines. Their progress may help reduce the dangers associated with hydrogen-rich blends, which could destroy a turbine’s combustion chamber.
Water electrolysis is starting to make inroads into the refinery sector. Shell has revealed plans for the construction of a 10-megawatt electrolyzer at its Wesseling refinery site in Germany. The project, called Refhyne, is supported with EUR 10 million in funds from the EU’s Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking. It will see British manufacturer ITM Power forging ahead with the design of a system
Riversimple, based in Llandrindod Wells, a Welsh town of 5,000 people, is venturing into uncharted territory. Crowdfunding a new fuel cell car is not the only thing that sets the company apart from its competitors. The small creative powerhouse will also take another route in distribution.
Special edition vehicles produced in only small numbers: It’s what luxury car manufacturers do to cultivate an air of exclusivity and add value to their brands – and their methods seem to work. They could also be a model for German OEMs to establish new technologies promoting sustainability. At least, that’s what it looked like to employees of TesTneT when they were searching for German automakers
The beginning of this year saw wide-ranging changes to the Fuel Cell Initiative, or IBZ for short. What used to be a group of manufacturers and energy suppliers collaborating to promote fuel cell heaters was integrated with the BDH, Germany’s national heating industry association, and Zukunft Erdgas, an advocacy group representing the interests of over 100 gas utilities and pipeline operators.
The National Innovation Program Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology is now providing financial support for off-grid fuel cell systems. Christian Schmidt, acting federal transportation minister, said in February 2018 that the government intended to guarantee the eco-friendly, uninterrupted supply of critical and remote off-grid infrastructure.
On Jan. 30, the German Automotive Industry Association, or VDA for short, elected a new president. By unanimous vote, Bernhard Mattes was chosen to head the Berlin-based organization. On March 1, he took over for Matthias Wissmann, president since June 2007, whose contract had expired. Mattes was the chairman of Ford-Werke between 2002 and 2016.
The 50-station target, originally set for 2015, has not yet been achieved, but it will be soon, according to the H2 Mobility Germany consortium. On behalf of its founding partners, it is setting up and putting into operation new hydrogen stations across the country.