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Wrightbus boss to raise £1bn for UK’s hydrogen transition

Jo Bamford, the owner of UK bus manufacturer Wrightbus, has embarked on an initiative aimed at expanding the country’s hydrogen market.
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This article was originally published by Power Engineering International

Jo Bamford, the owner of UK bus manufacturer Wrightbus, has embarked on an initiative aimed at getting the country’s hydrogen market on its feet.

The entrepreneur has partnered with investment company Vedra Partners to launch HYCAP, an investment fund aimed at investing in the green hydrogen economy to drive the UK’s energy transition.

HYCAP was launched with more than £200 million ($275.6 million) in capital sourced from UK businesses. The target is to raise £1 billion ($1.3 billion) to grow the UK’s green hydrogen production and supply capabilities and to create green jobs whilst helping the UK achieve its 2050 net-zero targets.

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Joe Bramford, the Chairman of Wright Bus and founding member of HYCAP. Image credit: LinkedIn

Jo Bamford said: “With the Government’s relentless pursuit of Net Zero targets and the publication of the damning IPCC report, it is our belief that hydrogen holds the key to reducing emissions – and there is a growing sense of urgency to act now.

“The UK has missed the boat on batteries, a sector dominated by China and the Far East, but we can be global leaders in the production and supply of hydrogen – an economy said to be worth $2.5 trillion in revenues by 2050.”

He said the timing for the launch of HYCAP is perfect considering the UK will be hosting the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference. Bramford said HYCAP will be able to secure more investors considering the time the fund has been launched, the climate crisis, and the growing popularity of the green hydrogen market.

Some 40 investment companies have already been identified who have the potential to invest in the green hydrogen market through HYCAP.

Mr Bamford, added: “We have also discovered that investors around the world match the ambitions of global governments in wanting green-focused funds which have a positive impact on climate change.”

Key reasons why investors are interested in the hydrogen market include; 70% of global GDP being linked to hydrogen country roadmaps, Hydrogen Council membership increasing almost five-fold since 2017, and the UK Government pledging to have 5GW of low-carbon hydrogen production by 2030.

HYCAP is expected to save up to 25% of cities’ transport budget, when fully operational.

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The post Wrightbus boss to raise £1bn for UK’s hydrogen transition appeared first on Power Engineering International.

Energy & Critical Metals

Toshiba, Sojitz and CBMM partner to commercialize next-generation Li-ion batteries with NTO anodes

Toshiba Corporation, Sojitz Corporation, and CBMM have entered into a joint development agreement for the commercialization of next generation lithium-ion…

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Toshiba Corporation, Sojitz Corporation, and CBMM have entered into a joint development agreement for the commercialization of next generation lithium-ion batteries using niobium titanium oxide (NTO) as the anode material.

One of the major requirements for rechargeable battery development is greater energy density and faster charging. NTO has twice the theoretical volume density of the graphite-based anode generally used in lithium-ion batteries. In June 2018, the three companies entered into a joint agreement to develop NTO’s potential as an anode material.

This work, led by Toshiba’s Corporate Research & Development Center, has reached fruition with the development of prototype cells, and the companies have now agreed to extend collaboration for accelerating development of mass production processes and the early commercialization of next-generation lithium-ion batteries.


Prototype cell & Niobium Titanium Oxide (NTO)


The three companies aim to commercialize high energy density, quick charging batteries in FY2023, mainly targeting application in commercial e-vehicles. CBMM has contracted with Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus, a pioneer in the development and serial production of electric trucks in Latin America, to mature this technology further in real application. Toshiba and Sojitz will support this project.

The NTO battery will be installed on new electric vehicle designed by Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus as a pilot project and parties will collect the valuable vehicle operation data.

Niobium (Nb), one of the metallic elements, is an important additive in the production of high-grade steel alloys, including high-tensile and stainless steel, and its ability to enhance strength while reducing weight has made it indispensable for automotive applications. Brazil-based CBMM is the world’s leading producer of niobium and is well-known for its strong technology and product development programs.

As CBMM’s shareholder and distribution agent in the Japanese market, Sojitz has cultivated the knowledge and capabilities needed to establish a stable supply system and assist in the development of different applications for niobium.

Towards commercialization, Toshiba aims to secure stable supply of niobium materials from CBMM and Sojitz, and the three companies will target to gain market share in the rapidly expanding secondary battery market by utilizing CBMM and Sojitz’s global network.

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Energy & Critical Metals

SAKOR Technologies provides new dynamometer system to U of Houston for testing electric motor, inverter & control system designs

SAKOR Technologies provided the University of Houston’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering with a dynamometer test system designed to…

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SAKOR Technologies provided the University of Houston’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering with a dynamometer test system designed to test motor and inverter designs for use in hybrid and electric vehicle applications.


The system features dual opposin 7.5 kW AccuDyne four-quadrant AC motoring dynamometers, variable frequency drives, and a variety of subsystems configured for testing electrical machines. The dynamometers are capable of bi-directional loading and motoring, allowing researchers to test different algorithms and designs. One dynamometer will be used for testing permanent magnet motors and the other will be used to test induction motors.

The dynamometers feature regenerative operation, which recovers most of the load energy and makes the system extremely power efficient. They operate at up to 8,000 revolutions per minute (rpm) and offer up to 150% overload capacity, making them compatible with most small hybrid and electric vehicle architectures.

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The system is automated by SAKOR’s DynoLAB test automation control system which provides the capabilities necessary for the typical test engineer and/or technician to design and implement complex test procedures without the need to learn a programming language. tevp

We are extremely happy to be involved with universities pursuing important research and development necessary to design new energy efficient technologies. This flexible testing system is ideal for use in an academic environment and users can develop and test many different algorithms and technologies with a single test system.

—Randal Beattie, president of SAKOR
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Energy & Critical Metals

Mustang Mach-E first EV to pass Michigan State Police tests

The Ford Pro all-electric police pilot vehicle based on the 2021 Mustang Mach-E SUV has become the first all-electric vehicle to pass the rigorous Michigan…

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The Ford Pro all-electric police pilot vehicle based on the 2021 Mustang Mach-E SUV has become the first all-electric vehicle to pass the rigorous Michigan State Police 2022 model year evaluation. (Earlier post.)


Testing included acceleration, top speed, braking and high-speed pursuit, as well as emergency response handling characteristics. Michigan State Police is one of two law enforcement agencies that annually test new model year police vehicles and publish the results for use by agencies nationwide.

The fact that the Mustang Mach-E successfully stood up to the grueling Michigan State Police evaluation demonstrates that Ford can build electric vehicles that are capable, tough and reliable enough for even the most challenging jobs. We understand the needs of our commercial customers and are committed to unlocking new electrification opportunities for them.

—Ted Cannis, CEO of Ford Pro

Ford Pro submitted the all-electric police pilot vehicle for testing in the Michigan State Police 2022 model year evaluation 18-20 September. Michigan State Police will publish results for vehicles tested on its website later in the fall.

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