May 24, 2016

Ballard Module Powers First Zero-Emission Fuel Cell Bus for Orange County Transportation Authority

VANCOUVER, CANADA and ORANGE COUNTY, USA – On May 23rd representatives from Ballard attended a ceremony to unveil the first zero-emission fuel cell bus to provide service for the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA), one of the largest transit agencies in California. The OCTA bus is the 6th American Fuel Cell Bus (AFCB) configuration delivered in California. 
Karim Kassam, Ballard Vice President - Commercial said, “Clean energy mass transit alternatives, such as this new fuel cell bus in Orange County, are a tremendous example of what can be done to help address clean air challenges. We are excited by the progress being made at OCTA and by others in California.”  

The AFCB configuration utilizes a Ballard FCveloCity® fuel cell module to provide primary power. This is combined with BAE Systems’ HybriDrive® propulsion and power management systems and deployed in an ElDorado National 40-foot (12-meter) Axess model, heavy duty transit bus. The OCTA bus was manufactured only a short distance away at ElDorado National’s facilities in Riverside, California. 

Oscar Pardinas, Regional Sales Manager with ElDorado National – California (ENC) said, “With the Axess fuel cell bus, ElDorado National once again proves our commitment to providing North American transit agencies an innovative and highly customizable heavy-duty transit bus.” 

Funding for the project was provided by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) under the National Fuel Cell Bus Program (NFCBP). The program includes testing of fuel cell bus technology components as well as demonstration of a number of fuel cell bus platforms. The NFCBP aims to improve fuel cell bus technology and manufacturing, moving the industry towards commercialization.

The OCTA bus will initially utilize hydrogen fueling infrastructure at the campus of the University of California in Irvine, which deployed its first fuel cell-powered bus in 2015, also utilizing a Ballard FCveloCity® fuel cell module. UC Irvine is home to the National Fuel Cell Research Center (NFCRC) which is focused on: facilitating, demonstrating and accelerating the development and deployment of fuel cell technology and fuel cell systems; promoting strategic alliances to address the market challenges associated with installation and integration of fuel cell systems; and educating and developing resources for the various stakeholders of the fuel cell community. 

About Ballard Power Systems
Ballard Power Systems (NASDAQ: BLDP; TSX: BLD) provides clean energy products that reduce customer costs and risks, and helps customers solve difficult technical and business challenges in their fuel cell programs. To learn more about Ballard, please visit

Fuel Cells in Action Locations:
  • North America
Fuel Cells In Action Application Type:
  • Transit Bus

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