The facility will enable the increased production of fuel cells with full cartridge assembly. In addition it will provide an intermediate step between small-scale and high volume in-line production. The plant will start producing its annually expected output of up to several thousand fuel cells by mid-Summer.
This facility will support on-going development and commercial activities in addition to providing the platform to demonstrate full quality assured manufacture. Licenced manufacture at larger scales remains AFC Energy's intended manufacturing route for full scale commercial products.
Ian Williamson, AFC Energy's Chief Executive, said:
"This year has seen significant progress in the transition of AFC Energy from a research and development focussed organisation to a product driven organisation. The business plan demands increased numbers of fuel cells and cartridges. Recent technical progress has allowed the Company's management to approve the investment in this additional facility. The relatively low investment required to establish this facility is further evidence of just how far our approach to low cost manufacturing has come. The company has explored many options and believes it has identified the most cost effective and efficient solution and regards this is a critical development on its path to commercialisation of its world leading fuel cell technology. This facility meets the needs for the coming months whilst we finalise our designs and line architecture for large scale production."