Skeleton Technologies’ next generation high energy ultracapacitors to power Wrightbus’ hydrogen buses

Skeleton Technologies – a global technology leader in ultracapacitor energy storage in automotive, transportation, grid and industrial applications – has announced cooperation with Wrightbus, Ballymena, United Kingdom, a leading bus OEM headquartered in Northern Ireland, in which the company will supply its next generation high energy ultracapacitor modules to power fuel cell buses in the UK. Their two times higher energy density is enabled by Skeleton’s latest material technology innovation, making them an ideal addition to hydrogen fuel cells in emissions-free transportation.

Skeleton Technologies has two subsidiaries: Skeleton Technologies GmbH located in Großröhrsdorf, Germany, which deals with manufacturing and sales; and Skeleton Technologies OÜ, located near Tallinn, Estonia, which handles R&D and pilot production.

Commenting on this announcement, Taavi Madiberk, CEO and co-founder of Skeleton Technologies, said: “Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are of high strategic importance to lower CO2 emissions and fight against climate change. Skeleton’s ultracapacitors are one of the key enablers of the hydrogen economy. Since fuel cells are not able to recuperate the braking energy and re-use it for acceleration, they need efficient energy storage devices to improve overall system efficiency and total cost of ownership. Combining ultracapacitors and fuel cells will speed up the market adoption of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.

Wrightbus is at the forefront of development of hydrogen vehicles and we are very excited to work with one of the most ambitious companies in the sector. We see a clear potential of 1000 buses in the next 5 years. Based on the technology and its underlying economics, we have reason to believe that all hydrogen powered trucks and buses could eventually adopt our products.”

Wrightbus Chairman Jo Bamford added: “For hydrogen buses, Wrightbus is working with world-class leaders, such as Ballard Power for fuel cells and Skeleton Technologies for ultracapacitors. Ultracapacitors and fuel cells are the ideal combination for better performance and lower cost of ownership but until now ultracapacitors were lacking in energy density. Skeleton’s Curved Graphene technology brings these needed improvements by doubling the energy density of ultracapacitors, and will therefore strongly contribute to the wide scale adoption of fuel-cell electric buses.”

This is the first commercial release of Skeleton’s next generation high energy ultracapacitors, based on material technology innovation, which allows to combine the highest power density in the market with an energy density 2 times higher than the closest competitors, including Tesla. Hybridization of fuel cell vehicles with ultracapacitors reduces the stress on fuel cells and benefits the vehicles’ fuel economy, allowing them to function more efficiently and increasing the overall range of the system. Wrightbus initial pilot testing is planned to be completed in 2021.

Wrightbus is a founding member of the H2Bus Consortium, announced in June 2019 and focused on deployment of at least 1,000 zero-emission Fuel Cell Electric Buses and related infrastructure in European cities at commercially competitive rates. Earlier this year, the U.K. Government’s Department for Transport (DfT) announced a 5-year, £5 billion (US$6.4 billion) plan to enhance bus and bicycle infrastructure in the U.K.

About Skeleton Technologies

Skeleton Technologies is the global technology leader in ultracapacitor energy storage in automotive, transportation, grid and industrial applications.

For us, developing and producing the best ultracapacitor cells, modules, and systems in the world is means to an end: helping companies to reduce CO2 emissions and save energy

We work with some of the largest companies in the world – from leading Tier One automotive firms and industrial equipment OEMs to truck fleet operators and aerospace prime contractors – to decrease CO2 emissions and fuel consumption, to improve power quality and protect equipment and infrastructure from power peaks, and to power electrification to fight climate change.

Our ultracapacitors, based on patented “curved graphene”, represent the biggest technological advancement in the industry in the last 20 years and the use of this innovative material provides our products with an unparalleled advantage in power and energy density.

Skeleton Technologies Group has three main locations: its manufacturing in Großröhrsdorf, Saxony, Germany, materials development in Bitterfeld-Wolfen, Saxony-Anhalt and electrical engineering in Tallinn, Estonia. From its foundation in 2009, the company has grown from 4 to more than 140 people.

About Wrightbus

We are one of Europe’s leading designers and manufacturers of advanced public transport vehicles. For over 70 years we have earned a reputation for producing vehicles which excel in style, quality and reliability.

Our hallmark is innovation – we pioneered low floor accessible buses in the UK, we were the first to introduce lightweight aluminium bodywork, and we have led the way with hybrid-electric buses and alternative drivelines.

We offer a comprehensive and versatile range of vehicles, catering for every aspect of public and private transit operations. From small buses to big buses, single and double deckers, articulated and Bus Rapid Transit we have answers for every public transport challenge.

Our capabilities include design, development and world-class manufacturing. We can supply buses completely built in Northern Ireland or in kit form for assembly overseas.

We pride ourselves on commitment to our customers, service which exceeds expectations and integrity in everything we do.