MIT team creates open-source hydrogen fuel cell motorcycle

MIT team creates open-source hydrogen fuel cell motorcycle

January 19, 2024 1 By Bret Williams

The Electric Vehicle Team has designed a motorcycle powered by H2 that can be built by riders.

The Electric Vehicle Team at MIT has created a hydrogen fuel cell motorcycle and designed it on a two-way open-source platform.

The vehicle has swappable parts including its engine, making it much easier to maintain and repair.

The hydrogen fuel cell motorcycle is designed to use an engine and body parts that can be easily swapped out, so it will be simpler to repair, maintain and even experiment on than a comparable vehicle built with its own unique parts.

The MIT team will be publishing its plan online so that riders will be able to build their own versions of the motorcycle. The vehicle built by the team has already undergone its own full test-track demonstration, which took place in October 2023.

There were about a dozen MIT students on the team that made the hydrogen fuel cell motorcycle.

According to the team, the H2 motorcycle wasn’t designed with competitions or races in mind but was instead created as a machine to be presented at a number of different conferences and other similar events.

Hydrogen fuel cell - For the love of speed - Building a hydrogen-powered motorcycle - MIT’s Electric Vehicle Team - Image Source - MIT YouTube

For the love of speed: Building a hydrogen-powered motorcycle – MIT’s Electric Vehicle Team – Image Source – MIT YouTube

The team first started its work on the vehicle in January 2023 and unveiled it for the first time in October 2023 at the Hydrogen Americas Summit. More recently, the team placed it in the spotlight at CES 2024. In May, the H2 motorcycle will travel to the Netherlands where it will be shown off at the World Hydrogen Summit.

Cutting edge technology in a 1999 frame

hydrogen news ebookMany of the components used by the team when creating their hydrogen fuel cell motorcycle were donated by industry sponsors. This included the fuel cell itself. The first few tests the vehicle underwent were on a dynamometer (a device like a treadmill for small vehicles) instead of a real road.

While the team waited for their fuel cell to arrive from Doosan in South Korea, the team used an electric battery to provide the necessary power. They used the frame from a 1999 motorcycle and while some custom parts were used, they focused on including as many swappable components as possible. The construction and testing took place in Building N51 at MIT.

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