These Hydrogen Fuel-Cell E-Bikes Can Be ‘Recharged’ In Seconds

While battery packs power the majority of e-bikes sold today, some are exploring the possibilities of hydrogen fuel cells. The Swiss tech startup HydroRide Europe AG presents a unique solution for sustainable urban transportation by not only providing fuel-cell-powered bikes but also a compact filling station that allows users to swiftly top off hydrogen canisters.

Pedestal-assist bikes are becoming increasingly popular for both commuting and recreational use, and this will likely increase the worldwide e-bike market to around $120 billion by 2030. These bikes give senior riders new opportunities and lessen the effort required to ride. Since lithium-ion batteries need a lot of downtime to recharge, the majority of bikes on the market now use them.

By providing quick refill options for its city bikes, HydroRide Europe AG hopes to draw e-cyclists to hydrogen fuel cells. In roughly five to six hours, the company’s small hydrogen generator can create 20 grams of hydrogen from 200 milliliters of purified water. Remarkably, this refill station may generate green hydrogen off the grid using solar power without requiring grid power; nevertheless, specific operational and efficiency figures are not provided.

The generated hydrogen is kept at an internal pressure of 1 MPa in a 25 cm (9.8 in) bottle-shaped container. This container powers an onboard 180-W fuel cell to provide up to 60 km (37 miles) of range, and it fits into the frame of HydroRide’s HYRYD bikes. It only takes 3 to 10 seconds to replace a depleted container with a new one, so there is minimal downtime.

The product lineup from HydroRide consists of a sports model, a low-step commuter bike, and a small 19.5 kg (43 lb) folding city bike. Every model has dependable disc braking for safe stopping and a rear hub motor for pedal assistance up to 23 km/h (14 mph).

HydroRide is creating a container-change station for fleet operators, similar to Gogoro’s battery swap stations; however, particular specifications are not disclosed. At these stations, riders can swap in their empty hydrogen containers for “charged” ones that will be filled with solar energy.

Rental companies are the primary target market for HydroRide’s products, not individual customers. European users may come across HYRYD-powered ridesharing programs or businesses that provide hydrogen-powered e-bikes as part of employee “leave the car at home” incentives. Furthermore, an e-scooter that runs on fuel cells is now in development.

HydroRide recently unveiled its product line at the MicroMobility expo in Amsterdam and is preparing for the 3 July Eurobike event in Frankfurt.

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