The hydrogen laboratory will be a 300-metre facility and is expected to hold the correct conditions to optimise fuel cells as the heart of hydrogen technology and innovation across Germany and Europe.

Within this facility, Fraunhofer is expected to be conducting research into various projects that could unlock cost-optimised and demand-orientated production of fuel cells.

This will help achieve both the economic and technological potential of hydrogen fuel cells.

Lasers will be used to support the production of bipolar plates used within fuel cells. By selectively structuring and coating bipolar plates, research can be significantly improved for its efficiency and functionality.

Dr. Alexander Olowinsky, Head of the Micro Joining Group at Fraunhofer ILT, said, “In Germany, of course, there are other well-known research institutes working on hydrogen, and we are in constant exchange with them.

“However, in terms of the variety of practical possibilities, our new hydrogen laboratory is unique. We are not waiting, we are forging ahead.

“We have identified which tasks still need to be solved. That’s what we want to work on now before it’s too late.

“We could work with component manufacturers for fuel cells as well as with partners who want to produce manufacturing technology such as scanners or tools for process monitoring or with those who want to test beam sources.

“The facilities also cover issues we have encountered in ongoing investigations with customers. We expect to make significant progress because the new machines have much lower restrictions in terms of speed, accessibility and controllability.”

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