Canadian Collaboration for Chemical Engineers

Posted on Monday 21st September 2009

A collaborative agreement has been signed between the UK University of Birmingham’s Fuel Cell Group and Ontario’s Hydrogen Village.  The collaboration will result in the exchange of researchers and academics and will facilitate commercial relationships with the Province of Ontario and West Midlands’ companies.

The Hydrogen Village is based in Toronto with a mandate to create early commercial markets for hydrogen and fuel cell applications and to educate the public, government and media on the benefits of these technologies.  The Village has assisted in the development and execution of a wide range of early deployment projects creating a sector cluster in Ontario. 

The University of Birmingham’s Fuel Cell Group based in the School of Chemical Engineering focuses on research around hydrogen as an energy vector and the application of fuel cells.  It houses one of the only two hydrogen fuelling stations in the UK and has its own fleet of five hydrogen powered vehicles which are taking part in a research project to ascertain the feasibility of hydrogen in a transport application. It also runs the newly created Doctoral Training Centre in Hydrogen, Fuel Cell and their applications, the first of its kind in the UK. 

The team are also involved in research with the Black Country Housing Association’s hydrogen powered house based in Stourbridge, West Midlands, UK. By remotely monitoring the hydrogen fuel cell system which is powering the house’s electricity, water and central heating the research team are learning more about hydrogen and fuel cells - their efficiency, performance, operation, and durability - in a domestic context. 

Dr Bruno Pollet, from the University’s School of Chemical Engineering, says, ‘We are delighted to be collaborating with the Ontario Hydrogen Village as well as the University of Waterloo, Queen's University and the University of Ontario Institute of  Technology and hope that by pooling our knowledge and sharing information and experience, we will be able to grow our understanding of how hydrogen will play a major part in fuelling our future, both in transport and in a domestic setting.’ 

Rymal Smith, who leads the Hydrogen Village Program, says, ‘Developing international ties expands networks of innovators, industry and ultimately customers.  This kind of agreement moves us in the right direction.’

Ends

Notes to Editors

1.The agreement was initiated by The Ontario International Marketing Centre and the University of Birmingham’s Fuel Cell Group.  Ontario’s Hydrogen Village will execute the agreement in partnership with AWM.

2.  The Fuel Cell Group was set up in 2000 in the University of Birmingham’s School of Chemical Engineering by Professor Kevin Kendall who jointly, with Dr Waldemar Bujalski and Dr Bruno Pollet is leading the research projects into hydrogen vehicles and combined heat and power systems stemming from a range of Advantage West Midlands funding including Science City. 

3. Hydrogen Village is based in Toronto with a mandate to create and promote early commercial markets for hydrogen and fuel cell applications.  The Hydrogen Village Program (administered by the Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association) has assisted with the development and execution of a wide range of early deployment projects creating a sector cluster in Ontario.  Hydrogen Village is jointly funded by industry members, Natural Resources Canada, and the Province of Ontario’s Ministry of Research and Innovation.

For further media information

Kate Chapple, Press Officer, University of Birmingham, tel 0121 414 2772 or 07789 921164, email: k.h.chapple@bham.ac.uk

Ry Smith, Manager, Hydrogen Village, tel 001 905 822 or rsmith@chfca.ca