ITM Power joins Australian hydrogen bus consortium
Energy storage and clean fuel company ITM Power announced the formation of the ‘H2OzBus Project’, and the signing of a memorandum of understanding with strategic partners, on Friday.
The AIM-traded firm said the consortium comprises Transit Systems, part of the SeaLink Travel Group, as well as Ballard Power Systems, BOC, Palisade Investment Partners and itself.
It explained that the partners had signed a memorandum of understanding as a further step in evaluating and demonstrating the concept of hydrogen fuel-cell electric buses for use in public transport in Australia.
The consortium would collaborate on a project to further investigate deploying an initial 100 hydrogen fuel cell electric buses in cities across Australia in the first phase, with the intention to use that as a seed for a more widespread roll-out.
Hydrogen fuel cell electric buses for public transport aligned with the Australian Renewable Energy Agency’s (ARENA) key investment priorities in accelerating hydrogen and decarbonising industry.
The first phase of the project was a concept development phase that would focus on infrastructure requirements, and detailed plans for the use of hydrogen fuel cell electric buses on bus routes in up to 10 central hub locations across Australia, where interest and demand for fuel cell buses had already been identified.
ITM Power said the consortium was leveraging the strengths of each partner, as they worked towards agreement on feasibility, scope and funding of the next phase of the project.
The key expertise that each partner in the consortium brought to the project, and their proposed roles in the project, would see ITM Power and BOC provide the hydrogen production and refuelling infrastructure.
Ballard Power Systems, meanwhile, would supply the fuel cell system to be integrated into the electric buses supplied by supporting bus manufacturers.
Transit Systems would maintain and operate the vehicles as part of their daily urban transit operations, or within a strategically-located project managed by Transit Systems, and Palisade Investment Partners would assist in providing funding and strategic financial oversight for the project.
“H2OzBus is an exciting project which builds on the international partnerships that have been developed in recent years by ITM Power in the fuel cell electric bus markets across the UK and France,” said managing director Dr Neil Thompson.
“This project provides the first application in Australia of our new 2MW PEM module that has been developed as a result of the ‘REFHYNE’ project in Germany with Shell, and represents a significant scale-up from our sub-1MW foundation projects for Toyota Australia and BOC Australia.”
At 1333 BST, shares in ITM Power were up 3.12% at 220.67p.