-- Unique Powerpac APU system successfully bridges existing fuel infrastructure with hydrogen economy of the future
LONDON, Nov. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Based on its recent analysis of the fuel cell for auxiliary power unit market, Frost & Sullivan recognises PowerCell Sweden AB with the 2012 European Technology Innovation Award for its pioneering Powerpac auxiliary power unit (APU) technology.
"PowerCell's Powerpac APU system successfully bridges the existing fuel infrastructure, dominated by petroleum-based fuels, and the much awaited hydrogen economy of the future," notes Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Avimanyu Basu. "The system which innovatively combines a fuel reformer and a fuel cell stack effectively addresses one of the major challenges in the trucking industry – idling."
The technology is sufficiently matured to be commercialised. It also meets various environmental regulations and overcomes limitations related to the existing APUs such as noise pollution and reliability. Thus, the all-round solution provided by PowerCell meets every aspect of an ideal APU system.
PowerCell's fuel cell technology is in the range of 1 to 6 kW, and uses both hydrogen and reformates gas produced in a fuel reformer. The technology is best utilised in range extender applications and APU systems that may be used to minimize idling in trucks and other heavy, long-haul vehicles.
"Whereas most of the fuel cell developers are concentrating on implementing fuel cells to energise the main drivetrain in automobiles, PowerCell is focusing on using fuel cells to achieve optimum performance with respect to improved fuel efficiency in the overall running of the vehicle," remarks Basu.
The efficiency from diesel to electric while idling of the main engine is approximately 6 to 7 per cent. In contrast, PowerPac is capable of generating electricity at a high power density and, at 25 to 30 per cent efficiency, is significantly higher when compared to competing technologies. Moreover, with the use of PowerPac APUs in diesel-driven trucks, total fuel consumption of the truck can be reduced by 5-6 per cent, resulting in a considerable monetary savings.
Though PowerCell focuses primarily on eliminating truck idling and efficient generation of sustainable onboard electric power with minimal emissions, the technology could also be modified to serve as an energy supply for various industrial and domestic applications.
"Powerpac could be ideally utilised as an idle reduction technology in the long-haul truck industry eliminating idling of the main engine with production of clean energy onboard to run auxiliaries such as the air conditioner and the radio," adds Basu. "With proper modification, the technology could also be used in other fields such as stationary backup power and also, primary power."
Frost & Sullivan presents this award to the company that has demonstrated excellence in terms of the uniqueness of its technology and its potential impact on new products/applications, on functionality and on customer value. The company is also commended for the relevance of this innovation to industry.
Frost & Sullivan Best Practices awards recognise companies in a variety of regional and global markets for demonstrating outstanding achievement and superior performance in areas such as leadership, technological innovation, customer service, and strategic product development. Industry analysts compare market participants and measure performance through in-depth interviews, analysis, and extensive secondary research to identify best practices in the industry.
About PowerCell Sweden AB
PowerCell Sweden AB is a developer of Fuel Cell APUs with the main focus of supplying an environmentally friendly and cost efficient way to convert diesel into electricity in order to reduce idling in the trucking industry. The products will also be able to support the power needs in almost any application area where there is a supply of logistical fuels for example other mobile applications such as RVs and leisure marine as well as stationary applications such as telecom back-up/hybrid solutions.
PowerCell Sweden AB is a spinout from the AB Volvo Group and the products, based on proprietary Fuel Cell and Fuel Reformer technology, is a result of almost 20 years' experience and extensive research.
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SOURCE Frost & Sullivan