New hydrogen-powered vehicle prototype to be launched this year
The Catalan company EVARM will present a prototype of a hydrogen-powered car in 2020. It is a vehicle that incorporates the technology developed by EVARM together with the Korean Institute of Science and Technology (Kista), which consists of a station that transforms natural gas into hydrogen, allowing CO2 emissions to be reduced by 60%. The initiative, which has a duration of two and a half years, was supported by 200,000 euros of Acció (Generalitat de Catalunya’s agency for business competitiveness).
The objective of the project is to investigate alternatives to the use of fossil fuels in the automotive sector. With the developed technology, current vehicles powered by diesel can be used and adapted so that they can run on hydrogen. During the first quarter of 2020, EVARM will present the final design of the prototype of the vehicle and at the end of the year it plans to carry out the first traffic tests in Catalonia.
Kista has developed the technology of conversion of natural gas into hydrogen that can be installed at LNG stations, which will facilitate distribution as it would be available at existing refueling points. For its part, the Catalan company has developed the engine injection and electronics system that allows it to be adapted to use hydrogen.
Under the project, EVARM is also exploring how to obtain LNG from sustainable sources. The company investigates how to reuse waste - from wastewater, slurry or food, for example - as a source to obtain a biogas that, once treated, can be used as natural gas. This fuel of sustainable origin can be injected into the natural gas distribution network and used in different applications such as transport.
This same gas can be also transformed into hydrogen using the station developed by Kista. "It is about applying the principles of circular economy to obtain clean natural gas that can be transformed into hydrogen, the most abundant element in the universe as an alternative to fossil fuels. In 5 years we will see hydrogen-powered vehicles circulating on roads frequently," said EVARM director Xavier Ribas.
The project also has the collaboration of the company Enagás, which works on different projects to promote technologies that accelerate the energy transition.
Source: Generalitat de Catalunya