The Car Geek: UQM Technologies To Power Hybrid Electric Bus

The Car Geek

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

UQM Technologies To Power Hybrid Electric Bus

Can you believe this? A hybrid bus… that would be totally awesome! But this project is yet to be finalized. The question is: where will the bus get its power source knowing it’s a hybrid vehicle? But personally, I’m wondering if it has the best parts like Subaru engine parts or if it cools down perfectly with possibly the help from a Ford radiator.

Maybe UQM Technologies has the answer for that and we better listen... UQM Technologies Inc. is the world’s known developer of alternative energy technologies. And guess what? Yesterday, they have announced that they have the power source to run the hybrid bus. The recently introduced 150 kW permanent magnet propulsion motor will provide the power and boost a fuel cell hybrid electric bus. This vehicle is presently being developed by Mobile Energy Solutions, LLC, Golden, Colorado which is under the financing body called the Federal Transit Administration’s National Fuel Cell Bus Program. Sounds cool!

The fuel cell hybrid bus measures 35 feet in length that displays a proprietary with all combined body parts and features which was assembled by Marietta Composites and two 16 kW automotive fuel cells from Hydrogenics, Inc. A low floor design is enabled with the help of the six-inch tall battery which is integrated on the floor. This was a combination without the presence of an engine compartment. The bus has a seating capacity of thirty-seven people which is relatively similar to a 40 foot regular bus. The hybrid bus integrates a battery in a foremost plug-in hybrid power system, which supplies a major part of the vehicle's power from batteries. It can be recharged by plugging it into the electric power grid every night.

"Unlike other fuel cell bus programs that are placing large fuel cells in conventional transit buses, we are developing a composite body bus that has been specifically designed for these advanced technologies. By doing so, we have been able to reduce the weight of the vehicle, dramatically improving passenger carrying capability and roughly tripling the fuel mileage compared to conventional buses of similar size," said Dale Hill, the Chief Executive Officer of Mobile Energy Solutions, and LLC. "UQM's 150kW propulsion system, with its exceptional torque and light weight, will allow our bus to have superb acceleration while maximizing the range between recharges, due to the propulsion system's highly energy efficient operation. We are looking forward to using UQM(R) propulsion systems on other vehicle development opportunities we are pursuing."

"We are pleased that Mobile Energy Solutions has selected our newly introduced 150 kW system for their fuel cell hybrid electric bus program. This system was specifically designed to meet the higher power requirements of larger vehicles, such as this exciting bus. We are confident that the performance and high energy efficiency of our system, together with the unique design features of the bus, will allow this purpose built vehicle to exceed its original performance expectations," said William G. Rankin, the President and Chief Executive Officer of UQM Technologies, Inc. "We are excited about working on this project and look forward to additional orders for this bus and additional vehicles as Mobile Energy Solutions continues to grow their business."