Home / Motor/ French startup launches hydrogen-powered bicyles

French startup launches hydrogen-powered bicyles


Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Thursday, 18 January 2018 00:04


 

PARIS (Reuters) - A French start-up has become the first company to start factory production of hydrogen-powered bicycles for use in corporate or municipal fleets.

Pragma Industries, which is based in Biarritz, France and makes fuel cells for military use, has sold some 60 hydrogen-powered bikes to French municipalities including Saint Lo, Cherbourg, Chambery and Bayonne.

At about 7,500 euros per bike, and at least 30,000 euros for a charging station, the bikes are too expensive for the consumer market, but Pragma is working to cut that to 5,000 euros, which would bring their price in line with premium electric bikes.

“Many others have made hydrogen bike prototypes, but we are the first to move to series production,” said founder and chief executive Pierre Forte.

The firm’s Alpha bike runs for about 100 km (62 miles) on a two-litre tank of hydrogen, a range similar to an electric bike, but a refill takes only minutes while e-bikes take hours to charge. One kilo of hydrogen holds about 600 times more energy than a one-kilo lithium battery.

Pragma also sells refueling stations that produce hydrogen through the electrolysis of water as well cheaper tank-based stations.

The bikes, which look and ride the same as any normal bicycle, are aimed at bike-rental operators, delivery companies, and municipal or corporate bicycle fleets with intensive usage.

Pragma, which produced 100 hydrogen bikes last year, plans to manufacture 150 this year. It has received demand from Norway, the United States, Spain, Italy and Germany, Forte said.

With bike’s range limited by the size of the hydrogen tank, Pragma is also working on a bike that will convert plain water into hydrogen aboard the bike, using a chemical reaction between water and aluminum or magnesium powder to produce hydrogen gas. “In the next two-three years we want to enter the consumer market and massively increase the scale of our operations,” said Forte.

 


Share This Article


DISCLAIMER:

1. All comments will be moderated by the Daily FT Web Editor.

2. Comments that are abusive, obscene, incendiary, defamatory or irrelevant will not be published.

3. We may remove hyperlinks within comments.

4. Kindly use a genuine email ID and provide your name.

5. Spamming the comments section under different user names may result in being blacklisted.

COMMENTS

Today's Columnists

Our chit-chat – Can conversations make a nation?

Thursday, 13 December 2018

We are living through fascinating times dominated by online conversations with offline taking backstage. From the Arab spring to Yellow vests in France, the online has proven its potential and power – be it destructive or constructive! A reading o


The vote, the verdict, and the TNA ‘backstop’: Beyond ’56

Thursday, 13 December 2018

“Leader of PLOTE and TNA MP D. Dharmalingam …stated that he believes that Ranil Wickremesinghe has handed in a written assurance of several promises. …The promises are said to include agreements on constitutional amendments, freedom for poli


Xi Jinping: China’s story of Moses

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Xi Jinping’s story resembles the story of Moses in many ways. Moses (Prophet Musa as known to Muslims) though an Israeli, was adopted by the Egyptian Pharaoh. Moses was known as the Prince of Egypt, until he fell out of favour with the Pharaoh and


We don’t want an executive presidency

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

The executive presidency was established in 1978. Since then there has never been as much hope for its abolishment as there is right now. It however still requires many actors to come together to work towards its abolishment. The 20th as brought to


Columnists More