Trade Resources Company News Nissan Unveils Solid-Oxide Fuel Cell Vehicle Prototype in Brazil

Nissan Unveils Solid-Oxide Fuel Cell Vehicle Prototype in Brazil

Nissan Motor has unveiled what it claims to be the world’s first solid-oxide fuel cell (SOFC) vehicle in Brazil, a prototype model which runs on bio-ethanol electric power.

This prototype vehicle is in connection with the development of the SOFC system, announced by Nissan in Japan in mid-June this year.

Nissan said the fuel cell prototype is part of its commitment towards the development of zero-emission vehicles.

It is already selling its electric car LEAF and it is also pioneering in intelligent mobility systems which could be deployed in vehicles in the coming years.

Nissan claims that the present zero-emission fuel cell prototype vehicle runs on 100% ethanol which charges a 24kWh battery and gives the vehicle a cruising range of over 600km. The tank capacity to store ethanol is about 30 litters.

It will be conducting further field tests on public roads in Brazil with the prototype.  The vehicle has a powertrain which is clean, efficient, easy to supply and it runs on 100% ethanol or ethanol-blended water.

The Japanese car-maker also claims that the emissions from the ethanol fuel are carbon-neutral and will be part of natural carbon cycle. The running cost of the vehicle is also less and it can give brisk acceleration along with silent driving like an electric vehicle and at the same time offers a driving range comparable to a petrol or diesel engine.

The main sources for bio-ethanol fuels are sugarcane and corn. They are abundantly available in North and South American countries.

With relatively easy availability of ethanol coupled with low combustibility of ethanol blended water, Nissan says that it is an easy alternative to the charging infrastructure and is also not dependent on it heavily. This feature makes it easy to introduce in the American market.

Nissan also says that in the future, people driving the SOFC vehicle could need to stop at a general store and buy the fuel off the shelf.

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