Ricardo to develop retrofit hydrogen fuel cell bus
Ricardo, the environmental, engineering and strategic consulting company, has received Government funding to create a retrofit hydrogen fuel cell bus.
Ricardo secured the UK Government money through the Hydrogen Transport Hub Demonstration competition. The contest is part of the Government’s Tees Valley Hydrogen Hub project, which is seeking to showcase real-world hydrogen transport technology solutions.
Ricardo submitted a bid with Stagecoach to demonstrate a retrofit hydrogen fuel cell bus. The DfT named the Ricardo and Stagecoach bid as one of the competition winners and has awarded funding to build a one-off vehicle which will be available for demonstration in the Tees Valley Hydrogen Hub from February 2022.
For the Tees Valley project, Ricardo is to convert a used ADL Enviro400. However, the retrofit is being developed to fit into any make or model of double-deck bus.
Ricardo will develop a scalable, modular solution, enabling it to be installed, with minimal adaption, to multiple single- and double-decker platforms. The modular concept may also be saleable as a ‘new fuel cell’ module to coach builders across the European Union enabling them to develop new fuel cell buses by taking a rolling chassis and applying their coach-build body alongside the fuel-cell module solution.
“Our collaboration to help with technical knowledge and extensive driver testing for the inception of this new technology is a further demonstration of our desire to help climate change” – Steve Walker, Stagecoach North East Managing Director
Steve Walker, Stagecoach North East Managing Director, said: “Introducing new low-emission technologies to reduce air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions is key to achieving our environmental goals. We are delighted to be working with Ricardo to bring this exciting advancement to the UK’s first hydrogen hub, which represents a huge step forward for the Tees Valley. Stagecoach has invested more than £1billion in greener buses in the past decade and is fully committed to reducing its environmental impact. Our collaboration to help with technical knowledge and extensive driver testing for the inception of this new technology is a further demonstration of our desire to help climate change.”
“Winning the Hydrogen Transport Hub Demonstration competition will enable us to promote hydrogen fuel cell capabilities for buses in the UK” – Teri Hawksworth, Managing Director for Ricardo Automotive and Industrial (EMEA) Division
Teri Hawksworth, Managing Director for Ricardo Automotive and Industrial (EMEA) Division, said: “National and Local Government Authorities across the UK are bringing forward their zero emissions targets to 2030. This creates challenges for bus operators who, while still grappling with the financial challenges of the global pandemic, are committed to transitioning to zero emission vehicles. Winning the Hydrogen Transport Hub Demonstration competition will enable us to promote hydrogen fuel cell capabilities for buses in the UK and mainland Europe, and demonstrate the environmental, societal and economic benefits of the circular economy: affordably achieving zero emissions, while extending vehicle lives through retrofitting rather than scrapping vehicles.”