The Canadian division of German carmaker Daimler, Mercedes-Benz Canada, has opened what it claims is the world’s first automated automotive facility for producing fuel cells.
The 3300 m2 building is in Burnaby, British Columbia, near to the fuel cell stack development at Automotive Fuel Cell Cooperation (AFCC) and an industrial fuel cell cluster in and around Vancouver.
Testing and commissioning of the facility has been completed, and the first automated fuel cell was produced earlier this month. Full production is expected to begin shortly after optimisation of the processes.
Long-term collaborator Ballard Power Systems, one of the prime developers of fuel cells, will provide the Burnaby facilities with its engineering services.
The move cements Mercedes-Benz’s commitment to commercialise fuel cell vehicles, working towards market introduction over the next several years.
“The fuel cell was developed right here in British Columbia, and a forward-thinking approach combined with supportive governments have helped establish an ideal environment for its continued development,” says Mercedes-Benz Canada’s CEO Tim A. Reuss.
“Our new facility brings together the development with the manufacturing for the first time, and represents a major step towards the commercialization of this game-changing technology.”
For further information:
UK fuel cell firm Intelligent Energy generates $35 million in funding (1-Mar)
UK government launches hydrogen initiative with industry (18-Jan)
US drives hydrogen fuel cell vehicles forward with $7 million investment (14-Dec 2011)
Ballard fuel cells to power buses in Norway (11-Feb 2011)
29 June 2012