Sunday, January 4, 2015

No. 865: Technology development for the age of fuel cell vehicles is in progress (4/5) (January 4, 2015)

Toyota’s fuel cell vehicle Mirai adopted a hydrogen leak detector developed by FIS, Inc. This company was acquired by Nissha Printing last June, but it has a substantial share in the world market of alcohol detectors and sensors for air purifier. The hydrogen leak detector is one of the vital devices to prevent an accident caused by hydrogen leakage. FIS developed this device by combining its sensor technology with microcomputer. Toyota’s Mirai is equipped with two units of this detector. If the detector detects hydrogen leakage, it discontinues hydrogen supply or prevents the engine from starting. The detector from FIS is three times more durable than the competitive models, and it needs only one third of time required by the existing model to detect hydrogen leakage. FIS is now one of the makers that can business directly with Toyota.

NGK Spark Plug developed a hydrogen leak sensor for fuel cell vehicles. NGK is the world’s largest maker of spark plugs. The sensor developed by NGK can detect such a low concentration as 0.2-2.0% of hydrogen. It judges the existence of hydrogen on the basis of calorie drawn by hydrogen gas. Although the conventional sensor detects hydrogen leakage with the help of catalyst and chemical reactions, NGK’s sensor is higher in precision than the conventional sensor and it does not deteriorate with age so much as the conventional sensor. NGK developed the new sensor by applying the micro electro mechanical systems (HEMS) technology. With the participation of NGK, the development of parts and components for fuel cell vehicles is growing more competitive. 

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Toyota's Mirai

Amazing acceleration by Toyota's Mirai
It takes only 9.6 seconds to reach 100km/h.

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