The “Electromobility through fuel cells” Program comes from a joint effort led by the Technical University Federico Santa María (UTFSM), where two other actors actively participate as national co-executors: the National Research Center Fraunhofer Chile Research (FCR) and the Energy Sustainability Agency (ASE). The international co-executors that participate are: the National Hydrogen Center, CNH2 (Spain), Ballard Power Systems Europe (Denmark), and the Aragón Hydrogen Foundation. Associates include the mining companies Codelco and Sierra Gorda, Bozzo Energy, Ancare Energy and Linde. The interested companies involved are: INN, Siemens, Sonami, Aurus Venture Capital and Komatsu.
This program works to develop solutions that enable the adaptation of transport vehicles used in mining in a technical and operational way, from their current operating condition through the use of diesel fuel, to an operation using fuel cells. This program has two phases. In the first phase, it is proposed to evaluate the economic feasibility, selecting the technology of fuel cells that offer greater fuel savings for mining companies. In this phase, a set of critical performance metrics or indicators will be defined to be determined with the mining companies that are members of the committee, as end users of the specific results of this program. The various technologies will be subjected to laboratory tests, at workshops or a test bench, where they will analyze which one(s) will be the most successful or with better performance, having the set of metrics as a selection filter, to move on to phase 2 , in which they will observe the test of the pre-selected technology(s) under real operating conditions, under the operational, safety and cost controls indicated as base parameters by the mining companies of the committee. At the end of the Program, it’s planned to have a prototype with fuel cells capable of operating in a real mining operation.