UltraCell’s newly developed portable fuel cell system is set to revolutionise infantry warfare and support the US Army’s goal of having a technology-enabled force by 2028.
Dubbed Honey Badger 50, the 50W reformed methanol wearable fuel cell power system has been selected by the US Department of Defence’s National Defence Centre for Energy and Environment to take part in a demonstration/validation program for 2021.
The Advent Technologies subsidiary on Wednesday (31st March) confirmed the news, stating that the Honey Badger 50 fuel cell is the only fuel cell that has been selected to be a part of the program.
The Honey Badger 50W fuel cell system has been created to operate on a solider worn plate carrier or ruck allowing for on the move battery charging which could revolutionise modern infantry warfare.
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The fuel cell system is set to be supported by the US Army DEVCOM C5ISR Centre and will undergo rapid design spirals over two years, applying user feedback gained during soldier touch points.
Dr. Vasilis Gregoriou, Advent Technologies’ CEO and Founder, commented, “This award by the DoD demonstrates the ability of Advent’s ‘Any Fuel, Anywhere’ technology to deliver innovative, mobile solutions that are at the forefront of the energy transition.”
“UltraCell’s new fuel cell technology will be instrumental in allowing soldiers to be self-sustained over 72- and 96-hour dismounted missions.”
A major advantage over the traditionally used generators is that the portable, hydrogen powered variants are able to be used indoors as well as out in the field allowing for seamless transitions in a warzone.
The Honey Badger 50 system is fuelled by a NSN 6850-00-926-2275 Cleaning Compound, Windshield (CCW) which is ~70% methanol and water.
In addition to this, its material is already in the arsenal with proven supply chain and minimal safety concerns, compared to JP8 fuel.
When compared to generators, the Honey Badger is very quiet at only 40-45 dBA vs. 90+ dBA.