Intelligent Energy, Loughborough based fuel cell engineering company, is a step closer to the deployment of its next generation air cooled fuel cell system, following a successful year-long trial with fuel cell powered scooters by the Metropolitan Police.

The trial, referred to as the ZERE project, has collected valuable real-life end user data which can provide valuable insight on drive cycle, scooter and fuel cell performance and hydrogen (H2) refuelling – all based on user demand. These findings can now be fed into the development of Intelligent Energy’s commercially available 800 Series Fuel Cell Modules.

A close out meeting of the ZERE project was held at Intelligent Energy’s Loughborough HQ to discuss findings with the partners. Representatives from the Metropolitan Police, the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC), OLEV, Fuel Cell Systems and Innovate UK also attended. 

Ashley Kells, EC Programme Director at Intelligent Energy, said, “It’s been great to have the opportunity to showcase Intelligent Energy’s advances in H2 fuel cell technology to key stakeholders and decision makers as well as potential end users. There are clear advantages to using H2 fuel cell vehicles in terms of both zero emissions at point of use and the refuelling times which are comparable with existing petrol and diesel vehicles. This rapid refuelling is crucial to a round the clock service such as that operated by the Metropolitan Police where battery powered vehicles are not a viable long term solution.”

“In addition to providing valuable real-world usage data the trial was also important in terms of giving the project a platform to educate the support services team who maintained and serviced the vehicle in how to do this for a H2 fuel cell vehicle,” Kells added.

Four of the scooters on the trial ran on an inner-city route based at Belgravia Police Station and the other three were based at the outer London location of Alperton Police Base.

ZERE was a collaborative project led by Intelligent Energy and involved Suzuki Motor Corporation loaning the Metropolitan Police seven Burgman scooters. It was part-funded by the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC). Suzuki GB and Cenex were also partners.