Yenra : Energy : Hydrogen Power : Stuart Energy and Ford Power Products to Develop Hydrogen Power Systems

Hydrogen Power

Stuart Energy Systems Corporation has signed a joint cooperation agreement with Ford Power Products, a subsidiary of Ford Motor Company. Ford has developed a hydrogen fueled internal combustion engine. Together, they will jointly develop hydrogen-fueled power systems for the global back-up power generation and other power markets.

Stuart Energy will integrate its proprietary hydrogen generation technology with Ford Power Products' hydrogen-fueled internal combustion engine generator package. This generator package is being jointly developed by Ford Power Products and Ballard Power Systems' Electric Drives and Power Conversion Division.

Stuart Energy expects to install the first hydrogen back-up power system at its head office in Mississauga, Ontario in the fall of 2002. This installation will satisfy the first milestone in the Letter of Intent signed in October 2001 with Cheung Kong Infrastructure Holdings Limited (CKI) to supply hydrogen back-up power systems for the Hong Kong and Asia Pacific marketplace. Subsequent milestones include prototype systems operating in field trials by spring of 2003. The first systems are expected to be commercially deployed by the end of 2003.

"This important agreement with Ford Power Products enables us to provide clean, reliable and safe hydrogen power products for the commercial marketplace within 24 months. With our CKI Letter of Intent, we expect Asia Pacific to be our initial market entry point," said Jon Slangerup, President and CEO of Stuart Energy.

Stuart Energy's integrated solutions will use proven technology and create a compelling product for the worldwide power market. "With our Hong Kong project on track, we are now targeting the U.S. market, where the concerns for energy security and clean air are driving forces for the adoption of commercial hydrogen solutions," said Mr. Slangerup.

"Once installed, these systems will form a hydrogen infrastructure for the near-term power market. This distributed infrastructure can also be used to fuel hydrogen-powered vehicles," commented Mr. Slangerup.

December 7, 2000 - Nuts to power our future cars?

If you want to go green, get out your nutcrackers. Scientists at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne say hazelnuts could provide the hydrogen to power the fuel-cell driven cars of tomorrow.

Fuel cells use hydrogen to generate an electric current, and researchers are trying to make them efficient enough to power electric and hybrid cars. But no-one has decided how that hydrogen will be best produced.

But now Dr Murat Dogru, of the University's Department of Chemical and Process Engineering, says hazelnuts could be an answer. He says Turkey, the world's largest producer, incinerates around 250,000 tonnes of shells a year.

To see if any useful gases could be extracted from this waste, Dogru and his colleagues fed hazelnut shells into a container called a gasifier. The chamber contains solid fuel lighters and is fitted with an air pump. Once you ignite the fuel, the air pump controls the oxygen supply-and so the heat produced in the gasifier. Controlling the oxygen determines which gases are given off.

Dogru says the system is cheap to run. "You don't supply a lot of extra energy. You just ignite it for a few minutes, then the nutshells fuel it," he says.

Hydrogen makes up 15 per cent of the combustion gases. The remaining gas is a mixture of carbon monoxide, methane, nitrogen and carbon dioxide.

But Tony Bridgwater of Aston University in Birmingham says these other gases needn't be a problem. Both methane and carbon monoxide can be converted to carbon dioxide and hydrogen by reacting them with water, he says. "Then you can use standard procedures for stripping out the carbon dioxide," he adds.

Dogru says a year's supply of Turkey's nutshells would produce 6,000 tonnes of hydrogen - enough to allow 1,000 of today's prototype hydrogen-fuelled BMWs to travel 32,500 kilometres each.