Ballard Power Systems has announced that it has entered into an $18m supply contract with Zhongshan Broad-Ocean Motor Co., Ltd. (Broad-Ocean), to support the deployment of 400 FCveloCity® fuel cell engines integrated into clean energy buses and trucks in key Chinese cities.

The transaction is part of an ongoing programme with Broad-Ocean to implement Ballard’s leading fuel cell technology in support of China’s ambitious plan to address environmental concerns and advance the adoption of zero-emission vehicles. The addition of fuel cell systems effectively addresses the limitations of stand-alone battery solutions in certain use cases, resulting in growing demand for zero-emission and efficient propulsion systems that provide bus, truck and commercial vehicles with the traditional range and refuelling times provided by legacy diesel solutions.

Randy MacEwen, Ballard President and CEO commented, “Today’s announcement adds further momentum to our strategy in China’s new energy transportation market. This deal provides another critical validation of the rapidly emerging market opportunity in China for the adoption of fuel cell technology to help solve environmental challenges, including air quality. With our strategic partner Broad-Ocean, we are positioning Ballard to successfully address this opportunity and scale our business, while driving down costs to support sustainable long-term demand.”

This announcement, together with an $11m transaction announced in April, means that Ballard is planning to support Broad-Ocean through the deployment of 600 fuel cell engines having a value of $29m, with substantial deliveries expected to be made this year. In addition to these modules for use in strategic demonstration projects in key Chinese cities, Ballard also closed the strategic technology transfer, licensing and supply deal with Broad-Ocean in April, under which Broad-Ocean plans to set up three module assembly operations in China, representing a further $25m to Ballard over five years.

Founded in 1994, Broad-Ocean is headquartered in the City of Zhongshan in Guangdong Province. The company is a leading global manufacturer of motors that power small and specialised electric machinery for electric vehicles (EVs), including buses, commercial vehicles and passenger vehicles, and for heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC).