Dutch Students Develop Hydrogen-powered Race Car
Students from Holland’s Delft University of Technology (TU-Delft) developed the world’s first Le Mans Prototype 3 (LMP3) race car powered by hydrogen fuel. The car, named Forze VII, will race against conventional fuel-powered cars later this year.
The current model is the 7th generation of their hydrogen-powered car and the second full-sized racing car. It took a team of 70 students to build and test the vehicle. The team will be continuously testing and developing the Forze VII race car.
Instead of placing a famous racing driver behind the wheel, the team chose to have two of their developers pilot the vehicle. For the simple reason that they have experience with the advanced systems.
0-100 km/h in 4 seconds
The car is based on a LMP3 chassis and is powered by a 100kW hydrogen fuel cell. The electric engines can generate a maximum output of 200kW. With this power the race car can reach a maximum speed of 210 km/h and reaches 0-100km/h in 4 seconds.
The team will race the Forze VII car during the Dutch Supercar Challenge at the TT Circuit Assen later this year. ‘It’s our target to win in this division and if we do, we will be the first team that can compete against gasoline powered cars with a fully hydrogen fuel cell race car. We want to show the world that this technology is cool and that it’s possible to race with it,’ according to team boss Rick Everaert.
The ultimate challenge
At this point the group has no plan to compete in other races, although they won’t rule it out. ‘At some point, the team has said that a Le Mans 24 Hours participation would be a dream because the technology would be ideal for that. If you can refuel fast enough and drive long stints, then it would be really cool to join’, says Everaert.
Innovators of zero-emission vehicles
The Forze Hydrogen Racing team have been the innovators of hydrogen-powered vehicles since 2007. The group is located in the D:Dream Hall, a designated part of TU-Delft where innovative projects see the light. Among the projects developed there are the prize-winning solar car, Formula Student vehicle and the Hyperloop.