Ballard Power Systems to Make Fuel Cells for Volkswagen
March 10, 2013 4:00 PM
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The contract is worth between $60 million and $100 million
Ballard Power Systems has agreed to develop
for Volkswagen Group under a contract worth as much as $100 million.
The deal means Ballard has to design and manufacture fuel cells for Volkswagen HyMotion demonstration cars. The contract is for four years with the possibility of a two-year extension, and is worth between $60 million and $100 million.
"I anticipate accelerating our automotive fuel cell program as a result of this collaborative effort, which will bring together additional fuel cell skills and expertise in both organizations," said Juergen Leohold, head of group research at Volkswagen AG.
Volkswagen has decided to go with Ballard's fuel cells because their cost and performance are finally able to compete with other green technologies.
Ballard's stock increased significantly at the announcement of the Volkswagen deal. On Wednesday, Ballard's stock jumped as high as 82 percent.
"The announcement of this research agreement with Volkswagen Group, a recognized global leader, is a major step for Ballard both strategically and financially," said John Sheridan, Ballard's president and CEO. "Ballard's focus with Volkswagen in this new automotive fuel cell research program will parallel our continuing work in commercial fuel cell markets for backup power and material handling — enhancing product durability and performance while radically reducing product costs."
Volkswagen has been making several green efforts as of late. In January of this year, it launched
largest solar park
the state of Tennessee at
33 acres with 33,600 solar modules
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RE: If you can't have science fantasy...
3/11/2013 11:13:26 AM
The problem with that is you're taking something which already has a lousy 15% conversion efficiency (solar), converting it to hydrogen at a 50%-60% efficiency (at best), then using a fuel cell to convert it back to work at 60%-70% efficiency (also rather optimistic). The net effect is that you're at about 15%*55%*65% = 5.3% efficiency.
You'd actually be better off just growing trees (about 30% solar conversion efficiency), harvesting the wood, and burning it to power a steam engine (about 20%-25% efficiency). Net efficiency of that chain is about 6%-7%.
RE: If you can't have science fantasy...
3/11/2013 6:36:55 PM
Your formula does not account for the value of the by-products (potable water and energy) along with it not being a linear equation (Solar is not the limiting factor).
In fact, as solar panels improve (other DT article mentions 35% overall due to process and material science improvements) truly renewable sources can be mixed in for the carbon source
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