Five suppliers were selected to participate in the National Fuel Cell Bus Program (NFCB).
AC Transit “HyRoad” Program
Three buses incorporating UTC fuel cells will push the limits of existing technology in this direct path project based at AC Transit in the San Francisco Bay Area, a national leader in fuel cell bus use. The project will accelerate testing and identification of the weakest areas of fuel cell and hybrid systems, root cause analysis, fuel cell technology development, and component upgrades with more reliable and durable systems. Data collected from benchmarking current systems will lead to fuel cell and component upgrades roughly one year into the project.
SunLine American Fuel Cell Bus
This direct path project’s focus is to develop a purpose-built, next generation fuel cell bus, featuring an upgraded 120-kilowatt fuel cell system from UTC Power, an advanced lithium-ion energy storage system, an advanced electric motive drive system from ISE Corp. that is lighter weight and lower cost, and an advanced New Flyer bus design using composite materials and modern electronics for weight reduction. SunLine Transit, internationally known for its hydrogen leadership, will operate the bus in the nine cities of the Coachella Valley in California.
BAE Compound Fuel Cell Hybrid Bus
The goal of this novel evolutionary path project is to trim capital cost and reduce operating costs by building on a highly efficient, commercial Orion hybrid bus design that balances a moderately-sized Hydrogenics fuel cell (15-25-kilowatt) as an auxiliary power unit (APU), an advanced BAE Systems advanced HybriDrive® Propulsion System and advanced energy storage. Called “compound” because it links fuel cell, conventional engine and battery energy sources in one system, the bus targets double the fuel efficiency of a diesel bus in an affordable package. It will operate with San Francisco’s MTA transit system for up to one year.
US Hybrid Integrated Auxiliary Module (IAM) and Fuel Cell Bi-Directional Converter (BDC)
These two component projects from US Hybrid in Torrance, CA, will develop critical enabling systems for more reliable and lower cost fuel cell bus operation. The Integrated Auxiliary Module (IAM) project will develop and demonstrate a single, low-cost, compact unit housing the low-voltage power and dual auxiliary motor drives for auxiliary power needs aboard a fuel cell or hybrid fuel cell bus. The Fuel Cell Power Converter (BDC) project will in a single unit optimize and streamline the complex energy flow between multiple devices, such as fuel cells, batteries and electric drive system. By standardizing the bi-directional DC-DC converter module design, the unit can reduce weight, complexity and costs of fuel cell systems.