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The contract is worth between $60 million and $100 million

Ballard Power Systems has agreed to develop fuel cells 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 the largest solar park in the state of Tennessee at 33 acres with 33,600 solar modules.

Source: CBC News



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By Solandri on 3/11/2013 11:20:31 AM , Rating: 2
Alcohol.

- Liquid at room temperature and normal atmospheric pressure.
- Relatively benign if you happen to spill a bunch of it.
- High energy density (not as high as gasoline but close).
- Burns relatively cleanly, much cleaner than petroleum.

The problems are:

- Fuel cells which take alcohol are less efficient, destroying much of the advantage of fuel cells over combustion engines.
- I don't think a way has been developed to "manufacture" it from carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and energy. All methods involve plants converting the C, H, and O to sugars, which are then fermented by bacteria to produce alcohol.


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