Empa, the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology,launched Switzerland’s first hydrogen station for passenger cars on its campus in Dübendorf on October 7, 2016. With a filling pressure of 700 bars, it enables fuel-cell vehicles to be refueled in just two to three minutes. The station is part of the mobility demonstrator “move” and used for various Empa project vehicles as well as for privately owned hydrogen cars.

The mobility demonstrator “move” backed by the Federal Office of Energy (SFOE), Coop and various other industrial partners on the Empa campus in Dübendorf has been in operation since November 2015. Besides an electricity filling station, it also offers pumps with natural/biogas (CNG for “compressed natural gas”) and a mixture of natural/biogas and hydrogen (HCNG). Until now, pure hydrogen had been available with a filling pressure of 350 bars, which is primarily suitable for refueling utility vehicles with large tanks. By installing the 700-bar pumps for hydrogen, Empa is now responding to the needs of fuel-cell cars: compact tanks, the longest possible range and rapid refueling. Hydrogen-powered cars can now be refueled in only two to three minutes and have a range of up to 600 kilometers on a full tank, which suddenly gives fuel-cell vehicles a competitive edge over conventional gasoline or diesel vehicles in terms of refueling comfort.

Empa’s new hydrogen station is closely linked to the first fully public hydrogen station in Hunzenschwil, which Coop Mineraloel AG is set to opened on November 7, 2016  in cooperation with H2 Energy AG

Photo: courtesy COOP