Fuel Cell Technology

 

Fuel Cell Technology

In a global context where the need to consume less energy and reduce CO2 emissions is paramount, Peugeot is continuing its technological research into clean and economical vehicles.

In addition to work on improving the efficiency of internal combustion engines, particularly with HDi diesel engines, the invention of the FAP (diesel particulate filter system) and research into HDi Diesel Hybrids, Peugeot is also studying “future technologies”.

For example, the hydrogen fuel cell could represent a high-potential energy source for the future.

The advantages of the fuel cell for the environment are many:
• it provides an alternative to fossil fuels,
• it helps to reduce CO2 emissions and therefore to control the greenhouse effect,
• it improves the quality of life in town, thanks to the silent operation of vehicles that use an electric motor and the elimination of local emissions

This technology, however, still has to overcome a number of technical and economic challenges before large-scale production can be envisaged.

Peugeot has therefore adopted a research strategy which aims to explore different solutions. This work has therefore given rise to the production of a succession of demonstrators.

To operate, a fuel cell, combined with an electric motor, needs hydrogen and oxygen. The oxygen is drawn off from the air, while the hydrogen is stored on board. The combination of the two elements produces an electrochemical reaction causing the displacement of electrons and protons, which simultaneously produces heat, water, and especially electricity.

Peugeot has presented several demonstrators illustrating the breakthroughs achieved in this area. The most recent, in 2006, called 207 Epure, a symbol of pleasure and environmental conservation, played a twofold role: that of an extremely attractive concept car giving a "foretaste" of the 207 CC and that of an innovative demonstrator fitted with the latest fuel cell version GENEPAC, developed in partnership with the "Comité à l’Energie Atomique".

Following the demonstrators Taxi PAC (2000), H2O (2002) and Quark (2004), 207 Epure marked a new stage with regard to fuel cell power, efficiency and compactness, with a touring range of about 350 km and a peak speed of 130 kph.