GE’s hybrid bus technology makes it to the next stop

Posted at December 23, 2012 » By : » Categories : News » Comments Off on GE’s hybrid bus technology makes it to the next stop

Scientists at GE Global Research say they have made it to the next stop in the route to affordable, clean fuel, zero-emission buses.

GE has demonstrated a bus powered by its new Durathon™ sodium battery in tandem with a lithium-ion battery and a hydrogen fuel cell.

Two years after demonstrating a dual-battery system for a zero-emission hybrid transit bus, which used a high energy density sodium battery paired with a lithium-ion battery, the researchers have gone one step further.

“For years fuel cells have been talked about as a clean transportation alternative but cost has always been a roadblock to widespread adoption,” says systems engineer Tim Richter. “With GE’s battery technology and dynamic dual battery management system, we’re starting to push that roadblock aside.”

The new design incorporates an energy management system that allows the bus to operate at full performance with a smaller fuel cell than previously possible, potentially bringing down the associated costs by 50%.

The energy management system enables two or more batteries or energy devices to be combined in various configurations, depending on the needs of the vehicle.

“By leveraging the right battery to do the right job, overall system cost and efficiency can be improved,” adds Richter.

The research is being carried out as part of a $13 million project with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and Northeast Advanced Vehicle Consortium, funded by the National Fuel Cell Bus Program.

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Related stories:
Chinese city of Shenzhen expands electric bus and taxi fleet by 1500 (28-Feb)
Chinese carmaker to deliver world’s largest electric bus fleet (18-May 2011)
GE’s dual battery technology could herald ‘bus of the future’ (3-Dec 2010)
BAE Systems to develop hydrogen fuel cell bus for Californian market (25-Mar 2010)

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