The hydrogen busses were used from 2003-2007 first through a project called ECTOS a 4 year project sponsored by the European commission's 5th framwork programme. A hydrogen production - compression, storage and dispensing station was ingaugurated in 2003 only using fresh water and electricity to produce the hydrogen. Three fuel cell buses of the type CITARO were test driven within the public transport system of Reykjavik. In Jan 2006 it was decided to prolong the Hydrogen bus demonstration using the same busses, the same fuel cells, the same hydrogen station but partially with a new agenda; Hy-FLEET:CUTE (see also www.global-hydrogen-bus-platform.com)
The test driving in ECTOS and the CUTE projects were partially run simultainously where ECTOS started and ended earlier. During the demonstration surveys were carried out, technology was monitored and data was sampled. The outcome was then integrated in further work with this type of transportation systems in the HyFLEET:CUTE project. In Reykajvik there was no detailed efficinecy study made, but if you are interested in looking into the performance of subsystems and total fuel consumption on board this first generation of Hydrogen busses then please enjoy the outcome of the study made in Stockholm.
The overall objective of ECTOS was to demonstrate the state-of-the-art hydrogen technology by running part of the public transport system with fuel cell busses within Reykjavík, Iceland. The energy chain is nearly CO2 free, because domestic geothermal and hydro-powered energy sources feed the national electricity grid and this is used to produce hydrogen. A hydrogen fuel station has been in operation since its inauguration and makes pure hydrogen for the ECTOS fuel cell buses and other vehicles that have been shown in Reykjavik on special occasions. The fuel cell busses are refuelled daily at the hydrogen station, therefore all transportation and extra handling is minimized and safety measures optimal. An emergency responce plan is in place and routine proceedures establised to minimize any risks.
The main research objectives for these hydrogen fuel cell buss projects is to find a safe, logical and clean way to integrate hydrogen into the current energy system. They are formulated because of concern for the socio-economic and environmental aspects for an eventual shift to a hydrogen based modern society. The goals of ECTOS are to learn from doing - and gaining real experience from using hydrogen as a fuel.