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Development and Evaluation of Fuel Cell Buses

[+] Author Affiliations
Mohamed E. M. El-Sayed

Kettering University, Flint, MI

Paper No. IMECE2015-53283, pp. V012T15A027; 5 pages
doi:10.1115/IMECE2015-53283
From:
  • ASME 2015 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 12: Transportation Systems
  • Houston, Texas, USA, November 13–19, 2015
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5755-7
  • Copyright © 2015 by ASME

abstract

Vehicles powered by hydrogen fuel cells produce zero emissions of greenhouse-gases. For this reason, hydrogen fuel cell bus technology has been regarded as a viable alternative for the future of green mass transportation. As a result, several hydrogen fuel cell buses are being commissioned for trials and evaluations on numerous routes worldwide.

Despite the relevance of the technology and sincere trials efforts of several fuel cell buses, the progress in the development and utilization of hydrogen fuel cell bus technology has been sluggish at best. In addition, the road to full commercialization of fuel cell buses for public transportation is undefined, unclear, and risky for developers, planners, as well as mass transient end users.

Most of the fuel cell buses being tried on the road today are built or converted with the rate of one bus at time. In most cases, a fuel cell system integrator combines a fuel cell from one of the few available suppliers with the bus body from a bus manufacturer for trial or technology demonstration. Accordingly, most of the fuel cell buses being evaluated today could be considered as prototypes or proof of concept.

The key characteristics and attributes upon which these buses are being evaluated such as affordability, durability, and reliability have not been matured and validated through a rigorously structured and controlled mass production process. Consequently the results of these evaluations could be misleading.

For proper and more objective evaluation of fuel cell bus technologies better understanding of controlled and validated mass production processes is necessary. Unfortunately, there are no documented efforts that address fuel cell buses production concerns. In this paper, development and evaluation issues related to hydrogen fuel cell buses and technologies will be addressed. In addition, some of the key characteristics of fuel cell buses will be studied.

Copyright © 2015 by ASME
Topics: Fuel cells , Buses

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