The US Army Tank Automotive Research, Development & Engineering Center (TARDEC) and General Motors have signed a new cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA) to further expand their partnership in hydrogen fuel cell technology development.
Under the agreement, the two organisations will conduct joint testing of new hydrogen fuel cell-related materials and designs to help validate their performance and durability prior to development of full-scale fuel cell propulsion systems.
The five-year CRADA will help both organisations to jointly develop a technology that can address both of their requirements.
TARDEC director Paul Rogers said that the US Army continues to explore technologies and partnerships that can provide the country with a decisive advantage.
"Our relationships - like this one with GM - are maturing and accelerating technologies critical to the transportation and energy capabilities of the future," Rogers added.
GM global fuel cell engineering activities executive director Charlie Freese said, "We believe hydrogen fuel cell technology holds tremendous potential to one day help reduce our dependence on petroleum and we are committed to building on our leadership through the continued development."
The majority of the company's fuel cell development work will be carried out at its new Fuel Cell Development Laboratory in Pontiac, which is 20 miles from TARDEC's Fuel Cell Research Laboratory located in the Ground System Power and Energy Laboratory building in Warren, Michigan.
Fuel cell technology is designed to address two major automobile challenges - petroleum use and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Fuel cell vehicles operate on renewable hydrogen and emit only water vapour.
TARDEC is also validating GM's hydrogen powered fuel cell vehicles in a comprehensive demonstration in Hawaii, US.
Image: A TARDEC engineer integrating a fuel cell onto a robot at the new Fuel Cell Research Laboratory in Warren, Michigan, US. Photo: © Copyright General Motors.