Ballard receives order from Porterbrook for fuel cell module to power U.K. HydroFLEX train

Artist's rendition of a HydroFLEX train.

The HydroFLEX will showcase how hydrogen can be used to power a train that retains the ability to operate across existing electric routes, on either 3rd rail or 25kV overhead power. — Photo courtesy Porterbrook

Ballard Power Systems (NASDAQ: BLDP; TSX: BLDP) recently announced that it has received a purchase order from Porterbrook Leasing Company Limited ("Porterbrook"; http://www.porterbrook.co.uk), a leading participant in the rail leasing market, for an FCveloCity®-HD fuel cell module and related support to power a HydroFLEX train in the U.K.

Earlier this year U.K. Rail Minister, Jo Johnson MP, challenged the rail industry to develop decarbonisation plans, with the objective of removing diesel-only trains from the network by 2040. HydroFLEX is an innovative response to this challenge from Porterbrook and the University of Birmingham's "Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education" (BCRRE), bringing together industry and academia in partnership to deliver the U.K.'s first-in-class clean energy passenger train.

Porterbrook will provide a Class 319 electric train for conversion by BCRRE's technical and research experts into a HydroFLEX hydrogen-powered train. The train will utilize Ballard's power module and Ballard will also provide system controls development, mechanical integration of sub-systems and other components.

The HydroFLEX will be the U.K.'s first fully sized hydrogen demonstrator train. It will showcase how hydrogen can be used to power a train that retains the ability to operate across existing electric routes, on either 3rd rail or 25kV overhead power. Testing and demonstration runs are planned for the summer of 2019 at RailLive, which will take place at Long Marston in Warwickshire. 

Stephen McGurk, Porterbrook Chief Commercial Officer said, "I am delighted that BCRRE has chosen to work with Porterbrook on this exciting fuel cell project. We have also engaged Ballard, a leading fuel cell company, to supply a fuel cell module and support services. The HydroFLEX will not only showcase rail innovation, it will also demonstrate how the private sector railway can effectively partner with educational bodies to jointly deliver real benefits to passengers, train operators and the communities our railways serve."

Jesper Themsen, President and CEO of Ballard Power Systems Europe A/S added, "We are pleased to work with Porterbrook and BCRRE on the HydroFLEX rail program. As evidenced by this activity in the U.K., along with our work on fuel cell rail programs in Germany and China, momentum is rapidly building behind the development and deployment of Heavy Duty Motive fuel cell solutions for both inter-city trains as well as intra-city trams. Ballard is now actively working with a number of the world's most important players in the rolling stock sector, including Porterbrook, to meet this growing requirement." 

About Ballard Power Systems

Ballard Power Systems (NASDAQ: BLDP; TSX: BLDP) provides clean energy products that reduce customer costs and risks, and helps customers solve difficult technical and business challenges in their fuel cell programs. To learn more about Ballard, please visit www.ballard.com.

Forward looking statements apply.

SOURCE Ballard Power Systems Inc.

Related articles

Chris Gardner, ICBA president.
Energy, British Columbia, Global ICBA applauds Trans Mountain green light; calls for more Fed support for oil & gas

“TMX has seen many twists and turns along the way, but we are happy and relieved that construction has been given the green light,” said Chris Gardner

Graphic map showing project location in Western Athabasca Basin, Saskatchewan, Canada.
Energy, Mines, Saskatchewan Azincourt Energy initial drilling confirms East Preston basement prospectivity

The East Preston project lies immediately south of the interpreted southern edge of the Athabasca Basin

Franco Terrazzano, Alberta Director for the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.
Energy, Global CTF Commentary: Taxpayers are losing billions due to a lack of pipelines

Canada isn’t getting full value for oil due to a lack of pipeline capacity to reach foreign customers

View all articles