Reva and IOC to Develop Fuel Cell Prototypes
Reva Electric Car Company Pvt Ltd (RECC) and Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) will develop two fuel cell hydrogen vehicles (FCVs) for a pilot project initiated by IOC, to develop hydrogen economy in India.
Sudarshan Maini, Chairman, RECC and B M Bansal, Director, Research, IOC, signed a statement of intent for the same on Saturday in Bangalore.
According to the agreement, RECC will use its expertise to build these hydrogen vehicles with fuel cell power modules and associated components to be sourced from abroad and IOC will provide the infrastructure needed to supply and stock hydrogen and to test the vehicles at its Research and Development (R&D) centre in Faridabad.
The new 5 KW fuel cell hydrogen vehicles will usher in a new generation in fuel cell technology. The hydrogen needed to fuel these vehicles can be produced by means that would lower India’s reliance on foreign oil supplies and thus, provide energy security. Emitting only heat and water as by-products of this process, the fuel cell systems are environment friendly and can run continuously as lo ng as fuel is supplied.
Performance and safety
RECC’s role will include designing and integrating the hydrogen powered fuel cell, carrying out performance tests and incorporating safety requirements for using hydrogen in the developed FCV. The prototype of the first car will be handed over to IOC within six months for further testing. The entire project is likely to be completed in 12-18 months.
Funding of project
The two companies will invest Rs 10-15 crore to set up the hydrogen infrastructure in India for this project. “IOC is committed to providing majority of the funding costs for the projects and will create the hydrogen infrastructure first at its R&D centre in Faridabad followed by Delhi and Agra for these cars to operate,” said Mr Bansal, speaking at a press conference here. He also pointed out that for successful commercialisation of this technology, a low cost platform needs to be in place for fuel cell vehicles and infrastructure issues to be worked out.
The two protoytpe cars are being developed to determine, if they can be used in a fleet of cars meant for heritage sites in Delhi and Agra.
“Fuel cell systems offer a promising technology of the future with advantages that include zero emissions, high efficiency and minimal noise,” said Mr Maini.
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