Europe’s largest fuel cell bus fleet has celebrated a successful first year in operation with the £21m ($30.2m) green transport project marking its first anniversary on 11th March 2016.

In its first year, the fleet has travelled approximately 250,000 miles, which is equivalent to each bus driving around the world. The vehicles carry around 36,000 passengers each month between major stations in Aberdeen.

The hydrogen (H2) production and refuelling station that serves the fleet, which is owned and operated by BOC, has refuelled the vehicles more than 1600 times and has dispensed more than 40 tonnes of H2.

Dr Hamish Nichol, BOC’s Innovation Manager for H2, explained, “BOC’s H2 refuelling station at Kittybrewster provides a clear demonstration of the viability of hydrogen as a carbon-free, zero emission fuel and redefines the benchmark for other refuelling stations to follow. We are very proud of the station’s 99.99% availability which clearly defines the station as world class.”

BOC’s H2 refuelling station at Kittybrewster provides a clear demonstration of the viability of hydrogen as a carbon-free, zero emission fuel and redefines the benchmark for other refuelling stations to follow.

It is understood that the station is now being converted to allow for the refuelling of fuel cell vans and cars, as well as buses.

The Aberdeen Hydrogen Bus Project, which is led by the Aberdeen City Council, is the most high-profile of a range of projects designed to create a H2 economy in the Scottish city. The council is now looking at increasing the size of the fleet.

Barney Crockett, Aberdeen City Council’s lead member for H2, enthused, “In the space of just a year since we moved into the operational phase, the project has outperformed expectations. It’s been very well received by the bus drivers and members of the public, and has created a real buzz about the city’s H2 capabilities.”

This anniversary coincides with the first day of Hydrogen Week which takes place across the UK next week.