LIER, Belgium, and SOUTH WINDSOR, Conn. – Belgian bus manufacturer Van Hool and fuel cell company UTC Power announced that their new-generation 40-foot (12 m) fuel cell hybrid electric bus won the Grand Environment Award at its debut at Busworld Europe Kortrijk 2009. The event opened Oct. 16 and ends Oct. 21. UTC Power is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company.
The new vehicle is based on the Van Hool A300L chassis that has been increasingly successful in the North American market. Lighter than previous fuel cell bus models, the bus will have higher operating efficiency than earlier models and will use advanced lithium-ion battery systems. Hydrogen tanks on the roof of the bus will provide a range of up to approximately 300 miles. The fuel cell bus marks the top end in Van Hool’s full line of vehicles.
The bus will be powered by a UTC Power PureMotion® Model 120 fuel cell power system. Van Hool has orders for 16 of the new buses for use in California and Connecticut urban transit fleets. The buses will be delivered from late 2009 through 2010.
Leopold Van Hool, Managing Director of Van Hool NV, said, “This new generation fuel cell bus has been the result of a true partnership. It shows Van Hool’s continued commitment to the technology based on the many benefits it offers to the environment.”
Ken Stewart, UTC Power Vice President, Transportation Business, said, “We’re seeing growing momentum worldwide for transit solutions that have zero emissions and quieter operation. Compared to a diesel bus, every bus equipped with a UTC Power PureMotion® system reduces enough nitrogen oxide and carbon dioxide emissions to deliver the same environmental benefit as planting more than a 30-acre forest.”
UTC Power has provided fuel cell power plants for fleet transportation since 1998 and its fuel cells have powered buses in the United States, Spain, Italy and Belgium. The company’s latest-generation proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell system has delivered more than 350,000 miles of commercial service for city transit bus fleets.
UTC Power is part of United Technologies Corp. (UTC), which provides energy-efficient products and services to the aerospace and building industries. Based in South Windsor, Conn., UTC Power is a world leader in developing and producing fuel cells for on-site power at buildings and for transportation applications.
Van Hool is a Belgian bus manufacturer specializing in leading-edge bus designs and green technology.