Zero-Emissions Ice Resurfacer Runs on Fuel Cells

The niche industry of ice resurfacers enters the renewable energy arena with a zero- emissions working prototype slated to make the 2010 Winter Olympics clean and sustainable. Powered by hydrogen fuel cells, the powertrain for the functioning prototype of the eP-ICEBEAR produces only water as an emissions byproduct. “This development of a near-commercial ice refinisher underscores the fact that the technology is ready, the hydrogen is available and companies are developing products for commercialization. Plus, it’s great to bring this revolutionary machine to the home of both the polymer electric membrane (PEM) fuel cell and the 2010 Winter Olympics,” said Bruce Wood, president of ePower. The eP-ICEBEAR was developed by ePower Synergies, which creates transportation systems for communities utilizing clean, sustainable energy systems, along with the Resurfice Corporation of Elmira, Ontario, Canada, manufacturer of Olympia and ICEBEAR brand ice refinishers, and the University of North Dakota Energy and Environmental Research Center (EERC). Company PR follows.

ePower Synergies announces world’s first fuel cell powered ice resurfacer Cordova, IL , November 4, 2005 – The first-ever hydrogen fuel-cell powered ice resurfacer – a machine that smoothes the surface of ice skating and hockey rinks – is scheduled to make its world debut Nov. 7 in ice hockey-crazed Grand Forks, North Dakota. ePower Synergies, Inc. announced today that the emissions-free hydrogen fuel cell-powered eP-Ice Bear ice resurfacer will be unveiled at the University of North Dakota Energy & Environmental Research Center (EERC) at 10:30 a.m. Monday, Nov. 7. The unveiling is part of a Hydrogen Energy Summit sponsored by U.S. Senator Byron Dorgan, D-North Dakota. The eP-Ice Bear ice resurfacer is ideal for indoor use due to its zero-emissions powertrain that produces only water as a byproduct. The eP-Ice Bear is being developed by ePower Synergies, Inc., a Cordova, Illinois-based company that develops transportation systems for communities utilizing clean, sustainable energy systems, and the Resurfice Corporation of Elmira, Ontario, Canada, manufacturer of Olympia and Ice Bear brand ice refinishers. “We think it is very appropriate to debut the eP-Ice Bear at this event, as it shows what Senator Dorgan has been saying – that the hydrogen revolution is underway,” said Bruce Wood, president of ePower. “This development of a near-commercial ice refinisher underscores the fact that the technology is ready, the hydrogen is available and companies are developing products for commercialization,” Wood said. “Plus, it’s great to debut the eP-Ice Bear in what many folks call the heartland of American ice hockey.” After demonstrating the eP-Ice Bear and its fueling system in North Dakota, ePower Synergies plans to exhibit the vehicle at the 2005 Electric Drive Transportation Association Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, Dec. 6 through 8. “We are very proud that our Ice Bear is the first to use a hydrogen fuel cell,” said Andy Schlupp, president of Resurfice. “It is a no-compromise, high performance machine with no harmful exhaust. We also have the strong possibility of a near-term commercial sale.” Tom Erickson, Associate Director for Research at the EERC, said of the Ice Bear venture: “This project is an excellent opportunity to showcase the vast expertise the EERC has in hydrogen technologies. We are working with Kraus Global, Inc., of Manitoba to supply the portable hydrogen re-fueling station for the eP-Ice Bear.” Gerald Groenewold, EERC Director, said the EERC’s National Center for Hydrogen Technologies is the “cornerstone” of its hydrogen efforts. “We currently have $8 million in federal funds, which is leveraged by numerous private sector partners to support the development of technologies for hydrogen production and fuel cells,” Groenewold said. Other project partners include the hybrid electric drive systems company and ePower partner HyMotion; based in Concord, Ontario, Calgary, Alberta-based Dynetek Industries, Ltd., the supplier of the hydrogen storage tank; Nuvera Fuels Cells of Cambridge, Mass.; and the U.S. Department of Energy National Energy Technology Laboratory and the EERC, which is leading the demonstration and will provide technical and logistical services. Senator Dorgan’s Hydrogen Energy Summit, called “Building the Hydrogen Economy,” is scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. Nov. 7, and will focus on a variety of topics including hydrogen technologies for the transportation industry, hydrogen-powered unmanned aerial vehicles, hydrogen technology issues surrounding the U.S. Department of Energy’s FutureGen Initiative, and current activities in the region focused on developing hydrogen technologies. The event also will feature keynote speakers Christopher Guzy, Vice President and CTO, Ballard Power Systems, Inc., and Bruce Wood, of ePower Synergies. -END- Contacts: ePower Synergies: Amy Nielsen, VP Communications, 309-654-9299 AmyNielsen@frontiernet.net RESURFICE: Lisa Schlupp, (519) 669-1694. LSchlupp@resurfice.com EERC: Derek Walters, Communications Manager, 701-777-5113, dwalters@undeerc.org.
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