Intelligent Energy, the UK fuel cell engineering company, has announced it is launching a power product for the European Electric Hand Truck (fleet order picker) market with partner German based FES Fahrzeug Entwicklung Sachsen GmbH, who already have fuel cell integration experience. Intelligent Energy’s class leading fuel cell technologies, together with the OEM development expertise of FES, now combine to provide compelling fuel cell power products for European Class 3 trucks used in the warehouse, logistics and distribution markets.
Intelligent Energy’s fuel cell modules (FCMs) are zero emission, operate silently and refuel in minutes with no need for the lengthy re-charging times that are required for battery operated MHE. European Class 3 MHE has a small footprint of 210mm battery width according to DIN 43535 which has been a barrier, up until now, for the integration of fuel cells. With recent changes from slow charge lead acid batteries to faster charge lithium-ion batteries, comes an increased need for electrical power and substation capacity to sites, a cost which is usually charged to the site owner. In addition, battery powered MHE experience a reduction in their voltage during operation which impacts on performance and extends operational downtime due to re-charge.
In contrast fuel cells provide the benefit of steady voltage output, require little downtime with a three minute cylinder refill of hydrogen and are easy to switch to from a battery box. Intelligent Energy fuel cell products will fit into the existing space and use the same connections. The advantages continue with no spare batteries needed, minimal maintenance/servicing and warehouse space freed up due to no requirement for recharging stations and the associated infrastructure that comes with it.
Currently, fuel cell powered MHEs are successfully integrated into larger applications (approximately 330mm battery tanks) operating in US warehouses. In Europe, grocery warehouses rely on fleets of order pickers that use a smaller battery space of 210mm (width). Intelligent Energy’s FCMs are compact and will easily be accommodated. Providing 1.2kW of power and operating in a temperature range of -10°C to 40°C they fit perfectly into European warehouse requirements. The operating temperature can widen to -30°C with the use of an additional cold pack, a perfect solution for cold storage locations.
Lee Juby, Chief Sales Officer at Intelligent Energy, said: “FES are a world-class integrator and we are looking forward to delivering products with them in 2020.”
Ben Wendrock, Team Leader at FES Fahrzeug Entwicklung Sachsen, states: “Intelligent Energy is a manufacturer with many years of experience in the development of high-quality fuel cell systems. The FCM fuel cell system is the perfect solution for compact, powerful plug & play drive modules powered by hydrogen to replace standard battery boxes for logistic vehicles.”
Intelligent Energy’s Fuel Cell Modules are CE and FCC certified and come with a warranty period. www.intelligent-energy.com/our-products