Toyota plans to test a fuel cell-powered emergency vehicle with a Japanese Red Cross hospital. The project will start in the summer of 2021 and is intended to confirm that FC vehicles are operational in the medical and disaster control sectors.
A vehicle based on the Toyota minibus Coaster, which uses the fuel cell system of the Toyota sedan Mirai, will be tested. The vehicle can supply power to a variety of electrical devices via numerous sockets both inside and outside the vehicle. In addition, it has an external DC system with 9 kW output power and around 90 kWh capacity. The idea behind this: The ambulance is to be used for medical care services in “normal times”, but in the event of a disaster it is also to contribute to the power supply of the affected region.
The vehicle itself has an engine output of 134 kW and a torque of 300 Nm. The fuel cell has a maximum output of 114 kW. The range of the 7.16-metre-long and 5.5-tonne ambulance is 210 kilometres and the top speed is 100 km/h, according to Toyota. The hydrogen-powered vehicle has three tanks on board with a capacity of 7.2 kilograms of H2.
Toyota and the Kumamoto Hospital of the Japanese Red Cross have been working on the development of the vehicle since the summer of 2020 and are convinced that the fuel cell rescue vehicle offers additional added value compared to conventional medical vehicles, according to an accompanying press release. There are potential applications in numerous fields of healthcare – “for example, for powering blood donation buses and examination vehicles, as an ambulance for remote areas and as a mobile PCR test vehicle”.
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