Saturday, November 13, 2010

British Columbia, Hydrogen Highway

British Columbia, Canada is building a hydrogen highway system to coincide with the 2010 Winter Olympics. The BC hydrogen highway is planned to run between the cities of Vancouver and Whistler with several other cities in-between and will showcase zero-emissions hydrogen technology.

Hydrogen refueling stations will also be built in the cities of Richmond, Surrey, Victoria and Squamish. As of late 2006, hydrogen fueling stations have been built in Victoria, Vancouver and Surrey. The province of British Columbia and BC Transit have committed $10 million towards the first phase of development of hydrogen buses to be used as transport along the hydrogen highway during the Olympics.

Ford has also been testing five of its Focus FCV cars along the hydrogen corridor gathering information about operating hydrogen cars in cold weather conditions. The Ford Focus FCV uses BC-built Ballard Mark 902 fuel cells.
Besides the British Columbia Hydrogen Highway Initiative, Canada also has put $5 million towards three other hydrogen initiatives as well. The Vancouver Fuel Cell Vehicle Project, Hydrogen-Powered Delivery Van Project and the Hydrogen High-Pressure Valve Development Project are part of the Canadian Transportation Fuel Cell Alliance's goal of moving Canada towards expanded use of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies.
A hydrogen fueling station has been constructed near Victoria at BC Transit's Langford facility. The station was a collaboration between BOC and BC Hydro and uses a three tier system of low, medium and high pressure hydrogen storage.
In Vancouver, on the University of British Columbia campus, another hydrogen fueling station has been constructed. The building of the station was a collaboration between National Research Council Institute for Fuel Cell Innovation, BOC Canada and General Hydrogen.
In Surrey, British Columbia, a hydrogen refueling station was opened in March 2002. The station was built and is operated by PowerTech Labs, which is a subsidiary of BC Hydro. In November 2002, the hydrogen filling station was upgraded to deliver pressures up to 10,000 psi to accomodate vehicles with greater capacity and range.
In order to generate hydrogen for the BC Hydrogen Highway and as a long term goal as well, the Integrated Waste Hydrogen Utilization Project (IWHUP) in Vancouver has been implemented. In this project, hydrogen as a byproduct, such as that generated in the sodium chlorate manufacturing process will be used to fuel hydrogen vehicles. Read more here.

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