Sunday, 23 November 2014
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Low carbon by road and sea

Eversheds is hosting a Birmingham Cleantech Cluster event on Wednesday 29 focused on the potential for hydrogen and fuel cells.

The organizers say the event will provide a summary of the latest developments and identify business opportunities in light of hydrogen fuel having a route map to market for vehicular and stationary  purposes.

UKH2Mobility is an example of how the UK is moving ahead with establishing the necessary infrastructure to ensure the technologies require to gain market acceptance, and wants to ensure that the UK benefits from the anticipated commercialisation of hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles in 2014/15 by creating a plan to encourage manufacturing and sale of the technology.

This will involve analysing how much hydrogen vehicles can contribute to decarbonising road transport in the UK, reviewing what investment is needed to commercialise the technology including refuelling infrastructure, and identifying how the UK can become leading global player in hydrogen vehicle manufacturing.

Delegates at the event will include entrepreneurs building new cleantech businesses, universities and research institutes that are developing new clean technologies, and venture capital investors.

Still with alternatively fuelled vehicles and news of an electric vehicle battery technology event taking place in London on Tuesday and Wednesday that has been designed by vehicle OEMs.

Organisers of the 5th EV Battery Tech: Global Cost Reduction Initiative say ‘the cost and performance issues associated with the EV battery are so crucial that a breakthrough could potentially deliver a major shift in industry and prove the business case for all EVs.’

Publicity material states that speakers will discuss material advances and cell manufacturing practices that deliver increased performance and quality at reduced cost; identify how to integrate cells and modules into packs to cost effectively improve vehicle level integration; and analyse the cathode, anode and electrolyte to cost effectively understand cell improvements.

The UK seems to be making positive strides at the recharging end of e-mobility.

Back in January The Engineer reported on the UK’s first private electric-vehicle rapid-charging station launching in Nottinghamshire.

The report looked at claims by ABB that its Terra 51 DC charger reduces charging times from eight hours to 15–30 minutes for an 80 per cent top-up, and is currently the only rapid model that can connect to networks of other charging stations via the internet.

The Engineer’s Stephen Harris reported that the installation of Terra 51 is seen as the start of the creation of a network of privately owned rapid-charging stations needed to help overcome consumers’ fears about range anxiety.

The theme of green transportation continues tomorrow with the start of a Royal Institution of Naval Architects event entitled The Environmentally Friendly Ship.

The second International Maritime Organisation Greenhouse Gas Study found that in 2007 international shipping emitted an estimated 870 million tones - or about 2.7 per cent - of global man-made CO2 emissions.

The conference organizers note a shift in the international marine industry towards the design and operation of vessels which minimize their environmental impact, claiming that innovative technology is being introduced daily that will eventually lead to zero-impact shipping.

Topics for discussion include alternative fuels such as LNG, hydrogen, biofuel, fuel cells, and solar power; reducing emissions of CO2, SOx, and NOx; and designing for end of life recycling.

Readers of Briefing might be interested to read also about how carbon capture and storage could reduce the environmental impact of shipping.

Petrochemicals are on the agenda too as more than 30 leading oil and gas organisations in the Middle East gather today to discuss the opportunities and challenges of collaborating on technology development in the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council).

The event, organised by ITF and sponsored by Kuwait Oil Company, takes place in Abu Dhabi.

ITF, an Aberdeen-based membership organisation of international oil and gas operator and service companies that has launched more than 180 joint industry projects, is encouraging companies in the GCC to focus on the need for collaborative oil and gas technology funding and agree on commitment to move forward with a strategy for the region. 

Presentations will be given on the opportunities and common challenges being experienced in the region.


Readers' comments (2)

  • It would be nice, if the diesel trains would get exhaust filters, and/or reduce their rpm in the station, or switch the engines off while waiting at the terminal, especially underground stations like Birmingham.

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  • It might be taken more seriously if the Government re-thought its plans to halve the feed-in tariffs, and prevented the power companies from robbing the subsidies. Coming into this fairly late, I was looking seriously at the PV panel home installations. But as soon as I discovered the rate was going down to 21p, I dropped the idea like a hot brick - the payback period is just too long. Surely, micro-generation is the way to go, with electric car batteries being charged during the day by homeowners or by office car park installations. Wind turbines look like a dead duck and will only come into their own when fossil fuels are exhausted.

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