Grid Scale, Hydropower

Zinc Air Fuel Cell Report

The Electric Vehicle Division of Electric Fuel Corporation, a zinc-air fuel cell company, has announced the results of a TIAX (formerly Arthur D. Little) report that projects significant life cycle cost benefits for zinc-air when compared with hydrogen fuel cell technology over a five to ten year period.

New York, New York – November 19, 2002 [] The report, an update of a previous study performed by Arthur D. Little, was set to reevaluate the life cycle cost of operating zinc-air fuel cell transit bus in a California public transit fleet. The report also compared the life cycle cost of zinc-air transit buses with the main competing technologies: diesel, diesel-hybrid and hydrogen fuel cell transit buses. Based on the report’s results, zinc-air fuel cell bus technology in transit applications is expected “to present significant life cycle cost benefits compared to hydrogen fuel cell technology in the short-term.” The life cycle costs of the other main competing technology, diesel-hybrid buses, are anticipated to be in the same range as zinc-air fuel cell costs. For this report, a set of five short-term and five long-term scenarios was developed with varying factors such as fuel prices and technology fuel economy/efficiency. These scenarios were applied to each technology. The life cycle cost results include fuel costs, refueling labor and equipment costs, vehicle costs, maintenance costs and battery costs, if applicable. Also evaluated where the value of the emission benefits of using zinc-air fuel cell buses compared with the competing technologies. In the long-term, the life cycle costs of both hydrogen fuel cell and diesel hybrid technology are projected to decrease due to lower vehicle capital cost and enhanced fuel efficiency. Zinc air costs are also anticipated to decrease.