delware environmental institute

UDaily: Study investigates use of solar on hybrid fuel cell shuttle buses

UDaily: Study investigates use of solar on hybrid fuel cell shuttle buses

Solar panels are popping up everywhere from rooftops and roads to highway signs and even cars. At the University of Delaware, a team of researchers has begun to investigate the use of solar power on the fuel cell bus fleet as a way to reduce operating costs without increasing greenhouse gas emissions.

The program currently includes two 22-foot, 22-seat transit buses equipped with nickel-cadmium batteries to meet the power demand of the buses and hydrogen-fueled proton exchange membrane fuel cells to maintain the state of charge of the batteries.

“The additional power produced by the roof-installed photovoltaic array can supplement the battery in meeting power demand and the fuel cell in charging the battery,” says Babatunde Ogunnaike, the William L. Friend Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at UD.