Developer of the T.27 dubbed ‘greenest car in the world’ (see story), Gordon Murray Design is hitting the headlines again this week as it partners with ACAL Energy to takes the first steps towards designing an affordable fuel cell vehicle.
Part of a 12 month feasibility study, supported by the Technology Strategy Board, Gordon Murray Design were one of fourteen British companies to receive Government support to carry out research into the development of fuel cell transport solutions.
Combining ACAL Energy’s fuel cell technology know-how with Gordon Murray’s unique iStream efficient manufacturing process should help the companies produce a cheaper fuel cell vehicle. Cost of production is one of the major hurdles to the full market adoption of hydrogen fuel cells vehicles, along with a lack of refuelling structure. Nonetheless, it is expected that fuel cell vehicles could being retailing in Europe as early as 2014, as car firms such as Daimler and Hyundai-Kia have both announced plans to introduce hydrogen-powered vehicles within the next four years.
Gordon Murray’s unique , energy efficient manufacturing process, is a simplified method of producing cars which means that the manufacturing plant can be designed to be 20 per cent smaller, making production much cheaper. Meanwhile Acal Energy ‘fuel cell engine’, uses the firm’s Flowcath® technology to eliminate the need for expensive platinum in the fuel cell. Together these innovations are significantly reduce the cost and deployment timeframe for an affordable fuel cell vehicle.
Professor Gordon Murray says of the partnership:“The team at Gordon Murray Design are very excited to be working with ACAL Energy in another new area where we can continue to push the boundaries of innovation.”
The study is expected to be completed within twelve months.