Hydrogen will come

Exciting discussion about batteries and technology openness in the Electric Lounge
Exciting discussion about batteries and technology openness in the Electric Lounge

It was full in Hannover, at least so full that almost all the halls on the exhibition grounds were occupied. Dr. Jochen Köckler, CEO of Deutsche Messe AG, put the number of exhibitors at 6,500 – just as high as in the comparable year 2017. At 215,000, the number of visitors was somewhat higher than in 2018, but significantly lower than two years ago.

It was remarkable, however, that Hydrogen + Fuel Cells Europe set a new record with 185 exhibiting institutions in its 25-year history.

The aisles at the back of Hall 27 were full, the orange carpet was barely visible at times. The mood was correspondingly positive – both among the exhibitors and among the visitors. Although there were not really many commercially available products to see this year, most of them weren’t even interested in that. Much more important were making contacts, talking shop and discussing the potential of hydrogen and fuel cell technology.

The predominant topic was, of course, the statement of VW boss Herbert Diess, who had only shortly before spoken out against open technology and in favour of a pure battery drive in the passenger car sector.

25 years in Hannover

The central point of contact was once again the Public Forum, which was surrounded by a number of larger stands. Otherwise, the picture was dominated by many smaller presentations, since despite increased bookings, the total area of 5,000 m2 remained the same as in previous years. For example, Forschungszentrum Jülich, which had been represented at the then comparatively small joint stand for hydrogen and fuel cells since 1996, was no longer present. The EnergyAgency.NRW, which for the first time in many years had not organised a large cross-sector joint stand in the Energy Hall, but concentrated entirely on hydrogen and fuel cells, exhibited at its traditional location.

read more in H2-international July 2019

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