Alternative fuels

It is important to be realistic when considering travel options and understand that for some individuals travel by car really is the only option. It is however still possible to travel by car in a sustainable manner.

Electric Vehicles 

Electric vehicles are a more efficient way of converting fossil fuels into mechanical energy.  The University operates one of the most sustainable fleets in the country with 40% of our vehicles being powered by electricity. The fleet has been recognised nationally.

Electric vehicles are used for a range of services in and around campus including postal delivery and the new Nissan Leaf pool car utilised by the Estates team.

Nissan Leaf landscape

The University has 13 vehicle electric charging points on campus that can be used by staff to charge their vehicles. Some are also accessible to students and visitors. For more information on use of charging points please click here.

Hydrogen Vehicles

The University has hydrogen powered cars as part of a research project. The cars are powered by a hydrogen fuel cell, they are pollution free, virtually silent in operation, can travel up to 100 miles on a full tank of hydrogen and at speeds up to 50 miles per hour.

In 2016 the University leased a Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell vehicle which is the only hydrogen fuel vell vehicle in the country that is actively used as part of the fleet.

Hyundai fuel cell

In addition to this the University has its own hydrogen gas fuelling station. The Air Products Series 100 fuelling station is situated at the University’s Department of Chemical Engineering where research projects are being carried out to ascertain the viability of hydrogen in transport applications as part of Birmingham’s Science City hydrogen energy project. 

The University also has a zero-emission hydrogen hybrid canal boat that uses a combination of magnet and fuel cell technologies. The boat, named the Ross Barlow, is fully operational and demonstrates how ‘hydrogen hybrid’ propulsion could be used to power other inland waterway craft


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