When it comes to making transport more environmentally sustainable, hydrogen is a key factor. The Netherlands is at the forefront when it comes to hydrogen innovation and they are constantly looking for ways to harness the full potential of this gas. In the Netherlands several buses run on hydrogen and they plan to increase this number. The University of Twente also contributes, they have been working on building the most efficient hydrogen car in the world for over ten years.
Every year the successful university team ‘Green Team Twente’ builds a new hydrogen powered car. In 2012, 2017 and 2019 they became world champions with their hydrogen car during the international Shell Eco-Marathon Europe race. This race is about efficiency not speed. Green Team Twente is proud to say it has built one of the most fuel efficient hydrogen cars in the world. Converted to an efficiency of 760 km (472 miles) liter of fuel, equivalent to the distance from Zurich to Rotterdam.
For the time being, the June 2020 Eco-Marathon Europe race has been cancelled, Green Team Twente has made the decision to keep the development of the new hydrogen car going. They want to show the world what hydrogen powered vehicles are capable of and have set the goal to increase the efficiency of the car even more. The latest generation will be adjusted on the inside, allowing for more space and increasing the system accessibility.
The biggest change on the inside lies with the drive train, Magnetic Innovations and Green Team Twente decided to join forces and develop an in-wheel hub motor. The previous car had four electric motors with a gearbox. This will be replaced by the direct drive hub motor that is placed in the wheel of the car. This system drives the car without the use of a transmission and eliminates physical contact between stationary and moving parts. Thanks to the hub motor weight, maintenance and costs of the car are reduces. The in-wheel hub motor also increases the efficiency.