Germany is facing the challenge of advancing the transition to a new era of environmentally-friendly, reliable and affordable energy provision. This also includes the securing of innovative concepts and technological progress for sustainable mobility with electrically-operated vehicles. Aside from hydrogen, fuel cell technology is an inseparable component of sustainable mobility as a storable and multi-usage secondary energy source. As it is highly efficient, it has the potential to guarantee secure, competitive and environmentally-friendly energy provision over the long term.

As a global leader in the development and production of fuel cell systems, NuCellSys is investing great effort into meeting the need for pollutant-free and sustainable mobility. In the fuel cell system design validation for the market introduction of passenger vehicles project, NuCellSys pursued the goal of improving the robustness, reliability and service life of a fuel cell system. This was achieved by improving the design validation methodology and by sustainably securing a basis for larger quantities for automotive application.

With the methodology being applied to FC technology for the first time, as well as the definition of reliability and strength processes, faults over all integration levels (components, FC system, drive train) were to be identified at an earlier stage in order to be in a position to introduce troubleshooting measures earlier.

Furthermore, for the first time a larger number of components and FC systems were to be provided at the end of every development phase to safeguard the design. Already in the development phase of this project, also at the suppliers, FC system components were to be subject to comprehensive robustness and reliability tests, which were specified in “robustness and reliability check lists”. Components with interaction to other system components were to be tested on the level of components and system units (representation of interfaces or the environment of the components and sub-system units to be tested) or in overall FC systems. With early fault detection and troubleshooting all components were to be prepared with minimal fault rates and maximum potential reliability (reliability growth) for integration in an FC system and the resulting design validation. In this way considerable costs in the later phases of development through design iterations and the logistical and time resources associated with them could be avoided.

As the developed process led to very good results, early recognition of faults and malfunctions and significantly improved service life of the FC systems, this methodology then fully formed the basis of the verification and validation campaigns in the already running follow-up project.

Funding Code

Partner Start of term End of term Funding amount
Daimler Truck Fuel Cell GmbH & Co. KG01.10.0830.04.149,699,139.86 €
9,699,139.86 €