DOE Fuel Cell Bus Analysis Finds Fuel Economy to be up to Two Times Higher than Diesel

    January 4, 2013

    The recently published Fuel Cell Buses in U.S. Transit Fleets: Current Status 2012 report from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has shown that the fuel economy of fuel cell electric buses is 1.8 to 2 times higher than conventional diesel buses (4 mpg) and compressed natural gas buses (3 mpg). This shows significant fuel economy improvement toward the DOE and Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) target of 8 mpg (diesel equivalent).

    In one year, the fleet of fuel cell electric buses in the study traveled 250,000 miles and had almost 25,000 hours of fuel cell system operation. The report was written by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and documents one fuel cell system operating more than 12,000 hours. This is an advancement toward the DOE and FTA's 2016 target of 18,000 hours and the ultimate target of 25,000 hours. The 12-month status report includes data collected from 18 fuel cell electric buses at three transit agencies; Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District (AC Transit), Connecticut Transit (CTTRANSIT), and SunLine Transit Agency.