Ricardo hired for economic analysis of fuel cell technology


California Fuel Cell Partnership engaged Ricardo Energy & Environment to conduct an economic analysis of fuel cell technology for the heavy vehicle sector. Fuel cells are a technology being developed to transform the wider transportation network towards sustainability.

One of the many technologies being developed to bring sustainability to transportation is the hydrogen fuel cell. This technology aims to harness the underdeveloped potential of hydrogen gas, touted as a clean fuel source because it only produces water vapor during combustion. In recent years, technology has become a focal point of new energy research, hoping to provide solutions for, among others, freight transport and public transport.

In an effort to support the deployment of then-nascent technology, the California Fuel Cell Partnership (CaFCP) was founded in 1999. The organization brings together industry players and government organizations to support the expanding vehicle market. electric fuel cell, through, among others, helping to ensure that vehicles, stations, regulations and people are aligned in the ecosystem more broadly to deploy technology seamlessly, and have recently turned towards a consulting company focused on energy and the environment Ricardo Energy & Environment.

The firm’s experts, already involved in the global Advancing Transport Climate Strategies project project, were called upon to model the economic impact, in terms of total cost of ownership assessment, of the diverse energy ecosystem for the commercial exploitation of various fuel options on the U.S. freight industry, including fuel cell trucks and hydrogen stations. The work will take advantage of Ricardo’s proprietary Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) modeling capability.

The modeling, which includes current and future technology projections, includes comparisons with new and current technologies, including natural gas, battery-electric, hybrid and hydrogen fuel cells. The process will also involve calculating various key economic metrics, such as total cost of ownership, payback period, and internal rate of return. In addition, the analysis should take into account the larger ecosystem in which heavy vehicles operate, their charging infrastructure and the respective investment costs.

“Economic modeling and valuation is essential for identifying and overcoming barriers to the commercialization of advanced technologies and for developing a strong business case against which clients can invest,” commented Piyush Bubna, consultant at Ricardo Strategic Consulting. “We are delighted to partner with the California Fuel Cell Partnership by providing our extensive expertise in economic modeling and total cost of ownership analysis and supporting the partnership in its efforts to advance fuel cell technology to zero. emission in commercial truck applications. “

“Medium and heavy fuel cell electric trucks will play a critical role in reducing vehicle emissions in California,” said Bill Elrick, executive director of CaFCP, “but are in the early stages of introduction. Ricardo’s TCO model provides a set of tools that will help CaFCP members build consensus on the potential of hydrogen fuel cell technology, as an alternative to diesel propulsion in truck fleets operating with California.

Ricardo has considerable expertise in the space, including his appointment to lead a £ 3.5million government-run competition to develop fuel cell recharging infrastructure plans in the UK in 2015. Arup has also been active in the field of fuel cells, including its agreement with ITM The power to collaborate on hydrogen fuel technology.


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