Turkey tests first boron fuel-cell car

Turkey tests first boron fuel-cell car

ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency

Turkey’s sodium borohydride fuel-cell vehicle was tested yesterday by Industry Minister Nihat Ergün in Istanbul. Turkey could make use of its vast boron resources in the automotive and defense industries, the minister said in his speech.

“Owning nearly 70 percent of the world’s boron reserves makes the works in this field much more meaningful,” Ergün said. The minister tested an automobile that runs on a sodium borohydride fuel cell developed under the supervision of the National Boron Research Institute (BOREN) and the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBİTAK). The fuel cell consumes nearly 1 kilogram of borohydride per 35 kilometers and the vehicle can cover 100 kilometers road at a maximum speed of 80 kilometers per hour.

“Why should we not use our potential in boron reserves?” said the minister, noting that the results of the research run by BOREN and TUBİTAK could also be used in Turkey’s defense industry for developing new fuel cells. “Instead of the heavy cells that the Turkish military uses, we can have lighter and more energy-efficient cells working with boron,” he added. “The research demonstrates that we can make use of our vast boron resources.”

Turkey, the land of boron minerals, has a considerable capacity of refined borates besides being the biggest borate ore producer of the world. Although 71 percent of the reserves are in Turkey, about 92 percent of the production is exported worldwide and 8 percent is used domestically, according to BOREN data.

Ergün said the alternative fuel cells, electric and hybrid fuel systems play an important role in Turkey’s efforts to manufacture a national automobile brand in the frame of Turkey’s 2023 vision, the centennial anniversary of the modern Turkish republic