Bramble Energy reveals low-cost hydrogen fuel cell technology, ET Auto

<p>Bramble's pursuit of innovation is evident in its development of a new stack structure, a key contributor to the significant cost reductions achieved.</p>
Bramble’s pursuit of innovation is evident in its development of a new stack structure, a key contributor to the significant cost reductions achieved.

New Delhi: The UK-based Bramble Energy, an innovator in fuel cell technology company, has unveiled a new approach to achieving the lowest cost hydrogen fuel cell technology globally. This innovation promises to reshape the hydrogen economy and foster widespread adoption across the mobility and energy sectors, the company said.

In a comprehensive whitepaper, Bramble Energy outlines its strategy for attaining a USD 100 per kW stack, a tenfold reduction compared to the existing conventional fuel cell costs. Additionally, the company envisions the possibility of reaching a staggering low of USD 60 per kW, thanks to rapid scaling.

This cost reduction holds the potential to eliminate the primary obstacle to the widespread adoption of hydrogen technology, particularly in areas like transportation, where high fuel cell costs have been a significant deterrent. Notably, current fuel cell technologies exceed USD 1000 per kW, making this a big advancement.

The cornerstone of Bramble Energy’s approach is its patented printed circuit board (PCB) fuel cell technology, which harnesses innovative design, materials selection, and manufacturing processes. The whitepaper highlights that, with increased manufacturing volumes, economies of scale can be realized, potentially driving PCB costs down to USD 60 per kW at a power rating of 1.5 Wcm-2 when production reaches the hundreds of megawatts.

Bramble’s pursuit of innovation is evident in its development of a new stack structure, a key contributor to the significant cost reductions achieved. Currently, the technology is undergoing early-phase testing within its UK supply chain, with short stack testing slated for Q4 2023 following core module optimizations and full stack testing anticipated in Q2 2024.

Tom Mason, Bramble Energy co-founder and CEO, said: “Industries are in desperate need of attainable, sustainable, clean energy solutions, so our mission at Bramble Energy is removing the biggest barriers to hydrogen adoption. With high cost hindering the hydrogen fuel cell industry for years, this whitepaper demonstrates how our printed circuit board fuel cell technology can deliver fuel cells at an achievable cost and the speed at which it can be realised compared to existing technology.”

“We hope this paper will provide industries from mobility to energy storage the encouragement for fuel cell technology to reach mass adoption as quickly as possible, and as a result, begin decarbonising immediately,” he added.

One of the primary achievements highlighted in the whitepaper is Bramble’s ability to reduce fuel cell costs by leveraging standardized PCB materials and an existing manufacturing route, thereby eliminating the need for capital investments (CAPEX). This strategic approach plays a pivotal role in achieving competitive fuel cell costs.

Unlike traditional fuel cell technologies, Bramble’s PCB-based approach allows for high-volume production within existing facilities. This means that the extensive global network of printed circuit board (PCB) manufacturing facilities, worth over USD 70 billion annually, can be harnessed to produce fuel cells of various shapes and sizes for diverse applications.

At the core of Bramble’s PCB fuel cell is a standard PCB laminate, serving as a bipolar plate, providing structural integrity, and fulfilling various critical fuel cell functions. These standardized materials are widely adopted across the PCB industry, offering significant economies of scale even at small production and prototype scales.

Bramble Energy’s digitally advanced fuel cell design enables the production of fuel cells in various sizes and power outputs, giving customers control over their supply chain. Through joint development agreements (JDAs), Bramble collaborates with customers to develop tailored solutions, which can then be manufactured using PCB factories within their existing supply chains.

Bramble Energy’s innovative technology represents a quantum leap in the global transition to hydrogen as a clean energy source. The company’s achievements in cost-effective fuel cell technology have the potential to expedite the adoption of hydrogen across industries, paving the way for a sustainable and environmentally friendly future.

  • Published On Oct 3, 2023 at 03:02 PM IST

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