Toyota releases fuel cell patents

Toyota releases fuel cell patents

Car makers across the world are free to take advantage of Toyota's hydrogen fuel cell drive technology after the Japanese firm removed the patents on thousands of its systems.

The auto maker is urging collaboration within the industry during what it describes as a "critical" period between 2015 and 2020 - when the first generation of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles will be launched.

It is also calling on energy suppliers, academics and government regulators to join forces as part of a "concerted effort" to drive faster and more economical technological development.

Patents relating to 5,680 fuel cell systems have been released. These include 1,970 relating to fuel cell stacks; 290 attached to high-pressure hydrogen tanks and 3,350 connected to fuel cell system software controls. A further 70 are linked to hydrogen production and supply.

Car makers, parts suppliers and energy firms who create and run hydrogen refuelling stations will have access to the patented technologies until 2020.

Toyota says it will "request, but not require" other firms to share their own fuel cellerated patents in return.

Copyright Press Association 2015