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Black Knight identifies US opportunities for expeditionary fuel cell

28th June 2023 - 15:00 GMT | by Wilder Alejandro Sanchez in Washington DC

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At Modern Day Marine, the EMILY 3000 was showcased aboard a Polaris MRZR Alpha. (Photo: author)

Black Knight Group sees the US Marine Corps' expeditionary light vehicles as an application for the SFC Energy EMILY 3000 fuel cell.

The EMILY 3000 fuel cell is ‘virtually signature-free', has 'silent and emission-free operation, with no exhaust gases,’ and can simplify logistics and costs ‘for the increasingly power-hungry payloads US Marines deploy for operations,’ Black Knight, which is distributing the system in the US, explained to Shephard at the Modern Day Marine event. German-based SFC Energy produces the fuel cell.

The EMILY 3000 can automatically recharge on-board batteries and act as a field-based charging station. According to Black Knight, the fuel cell can be integrated into vehicles such as the Polaris DAGOR, MRZR and Alpha.

The cell is connected to the on-board battery and takes care of power supply of a stationary vehicle when the engine is not running to power mortar, counter-UAS or C2 equipment.

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The cell requires methanol to operate and has run for 24 hours for nine days in test, using only 27l of methanol to support a communications suite. 'This is quite an advantage compared to running fuel cells that require large amounts of diesel fuel,' the Black Knight executive told Shephard. 'No fuel is wasted, 'he added, and it is designed as ‘a passive system, which turns on to optimise battery usage'.

The cell is relatively light, weighing 12kg, with dimensions of (L) 476 x (H) 206 x (W) 286mm and provides 3kWh of electricity per day. SFC has also developed the EMILY 12000 civilian version capable of delivering 12.0kWh and is currently working on a militarised version.

The EMILY 3000 is already used by the UK, German and Indian armed forces. While Black Knight does not work on non-US orders, the company confirmed that the Indian military has requested ‘900 units from SFC'.

Wilder Alejandro Sanchez

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Wilder Alejandro Sanchez


Wilder Alejandro Sánchez is an analyst who covers defense & security, geopolitical, and trade issues …

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