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ELECTRIC RACING Upcoming 'Extreme E' race will get power boost from off-grid hydrogen charger

From Luke James

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In a world first, Extreme E, in collaboration with AFC Energy, will utilise hydrogen fuel cell generators to change how teams power their E-SUVs with hydrogen fuel cell technology.

An Extreme E electric off-road racer.
An Extreme E electric off-road racer.
(Source: Extreme E)

In a revolutionary first for international motorsport, AFC Energy is partnering up with Extreme E to show a global audience how hydrogen can be used as a viable alternative to diesel. Devised by those behind the Formula E racing series, the ‘Extreme E’ race will see teams racing off-road electric SUVs (E-SUVs), powered entirely by AFC Energy’s hydrogen-fuelled H-PowerTM Charger, in some of the most remote parts of the world.

Inspiring change

The aim of the partnership is to bring off-grid, zero-emissions electric vehicle (EV) charging to Extreme E, the world’s first all-electric international rally series, throughout 2021.
Extreme E was created by Alejandro Agag, the founder of Formula E, and will see EVs racing in locations that include the Arctic, the Amazon Rainforest, and the coast of Senegal. According to Extreme E’s website, the rally series will “highlight climate change challenges faced by different ecosystems, whilst showcasing the performance of all-electric SUVs in extreme conditions” with the H-PowerTM Charger showcasing hydrogen as a viable clean alternative to diesel.

Extreme E’s organisers also hope that their rally series will highlight today’s pressing climate change issues and, through the use of 100% electric vehicles and sustainable EV charging, inspire people and organisations worldwide to tackle the challenges posed by the climate emergency.
“This collaboration with AFC Energy is a gamechanger not just for Extreme E, but also to the wider sports and events industry which could also benefit greatly from using this innovative, zero emission charging technology,” said Agag, Extreme E’s founder and CEO.

The remote manufacture of green hydrogen

With onboard EV battery capacity increasing to address so-called driver range anxiety and with EV users demanding shorter recharge times, the power grid is expected to come under significant pressure to meet consumer expectations. It is this challenge, according to AFC Energy, that inspired the design of their H-Power ChargerTM solution.
Designed for en-route or destination sites such as marinas, mines, motorway service stations, car parks, and more, their off-grid, zero emission rapid EV charger offers a solution to the infrastructure and investment challenges that are currently standing in the way of the widespread adoption of EVs.
The system uses a combination of HydroX-Cell(L)TM fuel cell and battery storage or supplementary grid power to meet the growing need for charge points that offer rapid charging, zero emissions and 24/7 availability. It will also showcase the remote manufacture of green hydrogen through micro-alkaline water electrolysis powered by the sun.

Adam Bond, CEO of AFC Energy, said, “The race highlights not only the true potential of electric vehicle SUVs in some of the harshest environments on earth, but also the need to raise public awareness of the debilitating impact climate change is having on our ecosystems.”
“The H-PowerTM system will showcase to a global audience exactly how hydrogen can be used as a viable alternative to incumbent diesel generations.”


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