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|Predecessor||Advanced Power Sources Ltd. (1995) Founders - Philip Mitchell, Paul Adcock, Jon Moore, Anthony Newbold|
|Founded||Loughborough, United Kingdom (2001 )|
|Headquarters||Loughborough, United Kingdom|
Intelligent Energy delivers clean energy solutions for the UAV, automotive and stationary power markets. The company embeds their fuel cell technology into products in co-operation with key industry partners to create solutions which extend their capabilities. Intelligent Energy is a global business operating out of its UK base with additional operations in the US, Japan, India, China and France.
The origins of Intelligent Energy began at Loughborough University in the UK during the late 1980s, when the University became one of Europe’s first research and development centres for proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell technology. In 1995, the UK’s first kW-level PEM fuel cell stack was produced by the R&D team. In June of that year, Advanced Power Sources (APS) Ltd was founded as a spin-out from Loughborough University by Paul Adcock, Phil Mitchell, Jon Moore and Anthony Newbold, and was the first company in the UK formed specifically to address the development and commercialisation of PEM fuel cells.
Founded by Harry Bradbury, Intelligent Energy was established in 2001, acquiring Advanced Power Sources Ltd, together with its personnel and fuel cell related intellectual property that originated from research conducted by both APS and Loughborough University into PEM fuel cell technology. This triggered investment and enabled the company to grow its business activities. In March 2005, it launched the ENV, the world’s first purpose-built fuel cell motorbike which gained the company recognition as a Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum in 2006. The ENV incorporated the company’s air-cooled fuel cell technology hybridised with a battery pack to provide 6 kW peak load to the motor to improve performance during spikes in power demand i.e. acceleration.
In 2007, a partnership was announced with Suzuki Motor Corporation to develop hydrogen fuel cells for a range of vehicles. In 2008, Intelligent Energy established the company, IE-CHP in a joint venture with SSE plc, one of the UK’s largest energy businesses, to develop fuel cells and other technologies for CHP (Combined Heat and Power) applications. In the same year, Intelligent Energy also produced the power system for the first fuel cell powered manned flight in conjunction with Boeing. In 2010, its fuel-cell taxi received The Engineer Technology and Innovation Award. In March 2011, the Suzuki Burgman fuel cell scooter, equipped with Intelligent Energy’s fuel cell system, became the first fuel cell vehicle to achieve European Whole Vehicle Type Approval.
In 2012, SMILE FC System Corporation, a joint venture between Intelligent Energy and Suzuki Motor Corporation, was established to develop and manufacture air-cooled fuel cell systems for the automotive and a range of industry sectors. Based in Yokohama, Japan, the joint venture also included a non-exclusive license agreement giving Suzuki access to Intelligent Energy’s fuel cell technology for its next generation of environmentally friendly fuel cell vehicles. During the same year, a fleet of fuel cell taxis incorporating Intelligent Energy’s technology was used during the 2012 London Olympics. Part of the European Union-funded HyTEC (Hydrogen Technologies in European Cities) project launched in 2011, the taxis were used to transport VIP guests of the Mayor of London around the city. In 2013, SMILE FC Corporation announced that it had established a ready-to-scale production line for its fuel cell systems, utilising Intelligent Energy’s semi-automated production technology. IE-CHP also received CE certification for its first-generation product, a 10 kWe/12 kWth combined heat and power (CHP) fuel cell. The certification allows the product to be sold in the European Economic Area, confirming that the product satisfies all the EU regulatory and conformity assessment procedures covering the design, manufacture, and testing of the system.
The company has c. 1,900 patents granted and pending.
Its fuel-cell technology is divided into two platforms: air-cooled (AC) and evaporatively-cooled (EC). The air-cooled fuel cell systems use low-power fans to provide cooling and the oxidant supply for operation. Heat from the fuel cell stack is conducted to cooling plates and removed through airflow channels, a simplified and cost-effective system for the power range from a few watts to several kilowatts. They are used in a wide range of UAV, stationary power and automotive applications for two-wheel and small car range extender applications.
Evaporatively-cooled (EC) fuel cell systems provide power generation from a few kilowatts up to 200 kW. Efficient thermal management of the EC fuel cell stack reduces system complexity, mass and cost. These systems are designed for high-volume, low-cost manufacturing, and use modular architecture that can be quickly modified to suit the application.
The firm's fuel cell stacks have been developed for small and large cars, scooters and motorbikes. In 2010, the company was involved in the development of the report entitled “A portfolio of power-trains for Europe: a fact-based analysis. The role of Battery Electric Vehicles, Plug-In Hybrids and Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles”, produced by McKinsey & Company with input from car manufacturers, oil and gas suppliers, utilities and industrial gas companies, wind turbine and electrolyser companies as well as governmental and non-governmental organisations. The report concluded, amongst other findings, that fuel cell vehicles are technology ready, and cost competitive, and that decarbonisation targets for Europe are unlikely to be met without the introduction of fuel cell powertrains.
The firm provides fuel cells to power UAVs and aerial drones. Its UAV Fuel Cell Modules run on hydrogen and ambient air to produce DC power in a lightweight package providing extended flight times when compared to battery systems.
The company’s fuel cell systems are used to provide diesel replacement and backup power initially for telecom towers but also for other sectors. The company has field proven its fuel cell products in the Indian telecommunications market with a tower uptime of close to 100%.
Membership of industry consortia and trade associations
The company is a founding member of UKH2 Mobility, a government and industry group aiming to accelerate the commercial roll out of hydrogen vehicles in 2014/15; It is also a member of Hydrogen Europe, a European industrial association working to accelerate the market deployment of fuel cells and hydrogen technologies; a member of the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA), the US-based trade association for the fuel cell and hydrogen energy industry, dedicated to the commercialisation of fuel cells and hydrogen energy technologies; and a member of the UK Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (UKHFCA).
Recognition and awards
- 2005 – The Sunday Times Tech Track 100.
- 2005 – Popular Science: Best of What’s New 2005 Award.
- 2006 – World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer.
- 2007 – Good Design Award, Transportation category.
- 2008 – Rushlight Award, Hydrogen and Fuel Cells category.
- 2009 – European Business Awards “Ruban d’Honneur”.
- 2010 – Rushlight Award, Powered Transport category.
- 2010 – The Engineer Technology and Innovation Energy Award.
- 2010 – Tech Tour Award.
- 2011 – Sunday Times Tech Track 100.
- 2012 – Sunday Times Tech Track 100.
- 2013 – Leicester Mercury Business Awards winner of Company of the Year.
- 2013 – Sunday Times Tech Track 100.
- 2013 - Deloitte Technology Fast500 EMEA 2013 
- 2014 - UKSPA Anniversary Awards 
- 2015 - Edison Award, Gold 
- 2015 - BusinessGreen Technology Awards, Breakthrough of the Year and Technology of the Year 
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- Profile: Intelligent Energy - October 2012. Cleantech Investor. October 2012. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- Intelligent Energy’s ENV Fuel Cell Motorcycle. Green Car Congress. 16 March 2005. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- Intelligent Energy and Suzuki to Partner on Hydrogen Fuel Cell Motorcycles. Green Car Congress. 8 February 2007. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- Fuel cell combined heat and power venture secures £3.7 million. Energy Efficiency News. 9 November 2010. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- Boeing fuel cell plane in manned aviation first. Science Direct. April 2008. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- Technology and Innovation award winners revealed. The Engineer. 2010. Retrieved 19 June 2013. Cite error: Invalid
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- Suzuki’s Burgman Fuel-Cell Scooter becomes world’s first fuel cell vehicle to earn European Whole Vehicle Type Approval. Global Suzuki. 9 March 2011. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- UK-based company Intelligent Energy and partner Suzuki unveil joint venture to develop and manufacture new fuel cell systems. SMMT. 8 February 2012. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Taxis Drive Olympic VIPs 2500 Miles. Fuel Cell Today. 1 October 2012. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- Intelligent Energy and Suzuki Announce Ready-to-Scale Fuel Cell Production Line. Electric Cars Report. 21 February 2013. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- Intelligent Energy and Scottish and Southern Energy JV IE-CHP Receives CE Certification for First Fuel Cell Product Fuel Cell Today. 20 March 2013. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- A portfolio of power-trains for Europe: a fact-based analysis. Fuel Cells and Hydrogen. 9 November 2010. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Hydrogen fuel cells for telecoms: Clean power is calling. Critical Power Online. 15 November 2012. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Intelligent Energy announces its support for UKH2 Mobility. Loughborough University. 9 November 2010. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Members List. New Energy World. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Members List. Fuel Cell& Hydrogen Energy Association. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Members List. UKHFCA. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Tech Track Ranking. Fast Track. 2005. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Top award for fuel cell bike. Platinum Today. 28 November 2005. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- World Economic Forum Announces 36 Technology Pioneers for 2006. Green Car Congress. 5 December 2005. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
- Good Design Awards 2007 for Transportation. Good Design Awards. 2007. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Roll of Honour. Rushlight Awards. 9 November 2010. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- The European Business Awards: European Business Awards announce 2009 Ruban d'Honneur Winners. Mobile Security Zone. 27 November 2008. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Rushlight Awards 2010. Cleantech Investor. January 2011. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- European Tech Tour Names UK and Ireland`s Most Promising High Growth Technology Companies; Selected Companies Stand to Benefit from $10 Billion in Investment Capital. Reuters. 28 April 2010. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Tech Track Ranking. Fast Track. 2011. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Tech Track Ranking. Fast Track. 2012. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- Intelligent Energy, of Loughborough, named Leicester Mercury Company of the Year. Leicester Mercury. 22 March 2013. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
- . Fast Track. 2012. Retrieved 23 March 2016.
- . Fast 500. 2012. Retrieved 23 March 2016.
- . UKSPA. 2014. Retrieved 23 March 2016.
- . Edison. 2015. Retrieved 23 March 2016.
- . BusinessGreen. 2015. Retrieved 23 March 2016.