Cleantech Challenges

Cleantech Challenges

Shell Hydrogen and the Ministry of Transportation & Infrastructure need solutions that aim to advance environmental sustainability and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Innovation Marketplace

Cleantech Challenges

Two Cleantech Challenges were presented by Foresight Cleantech Accelerator Centre at the 2019 #BCTECHSummit from Shell Hydrogen and the Ministry of Transportation & Infrastructure. Specifically, they are looking for solutions that aim to advance environmental sustainability and reduce greenhouse gas emissions as described below.   

1. Shell Hydrogen: Process improvements for hydrogen production Hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles convert compressed hydrogen from the fuel tank into electricity that powers the electric motor of a vehicle. When driven, such cars do not produce greenhouse gases from their tailpipe – the only emission is water vapour. When renewable electricity is used to make the hydrogen, the vehicle can effectively be powered without generating any emissions.  Hydrogen vehicles have similar performance and acceleration capabilities to petrol and diesel cars. They are quick to refuel and can drive similar distances. Energy is stored in compressed hydrogen fuel, rather than a battery, which means that hydrogen-powered cars can potentially drive up to 700 kilometres without refuelling. The cars take up to five minutes to refuel – similar to current refuelling times for petrol and diesel cars. 

The challenge is to provide solutions that improve three important areas of hydrogen production: 

  • Cost reduction with a focus on (but not limited to): Compression (develop a high capacity high-pressure compression system for heavy-duty applications), electrolyzers, valves and manifolding, and/or industrial control and sensors. 
  • Reliability improvement of refuelling systems or components with a focus on (but not limited to): Compressor, refuelling protocol software, nozzles, fittings, chilling systems and hoses. 
  • Methods to increase hydrogen by weight and volume for distribution systems such as (but not limited to): Novel designs and configurations for high pressure vessels, liquid organic carriers, low-cost micro liquefaction (Small scale liquefaction is of high interest to enable stranded” low-cost 10-50 MW renewable projects located within 1000 mi. of load centres to be cost-effective) and others. 

2. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure: Zero-emission chargers in highway rest areas: The B.C. government has established a goal to increase the use of electric vehicles to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. To support this, the Province is developing a network of DC Fast Charging Stations to allow electric vehicles to operate throughout the province, including charging stations in provincial highway rest areas which are located between communities. To date, eleven charging sites have been installed with another eight planned for installation in 2019.  Some rest areas, however, do not have access to the electrical grid meaning a complete network of charging stations cannot be implemented at this time. 

The challenge is to identify zero emission technologies and develop the necessary equipment to operate DC Fast Charging Stations in areas of the province not serviced by the electrical grid. This equipment and technology developed will need to work in a variety of locations throughout the province and must take into account the varied weather and geographical conditions. 

The Cleantech Challenge is no longer accepting new applications.