In Focus: Revitalising Bristol’s Marine Heritage With Clean Energy

Our In Focus series shines a light on some of the businesses operating from our centres to introduce their teams and share some of their recent projects.

This month, we caught up with Jas and the team at Auriga Energy, who’ve been based in Easton for over 10 years.

BSW – Hi Jas, this is an exciting time for Auriga Energy, can you first tell us a bit about your business?

AE – We develop fuel cell systems, which basically produce clean energy using hydrogen. It’s a highly efficient, reliable and low maintenance form of power which, crucially, creates zero emissions or toxic waste.

BSW – Which is obviously high on the agenda at the moment, in light of the government’s commitment to net zero carbon by 2050.

AE – That’s right. Hydrogen powered fuel cells release only steam, so are a completely clean source of power.

BSW – How are you able to use the technology?

AE – Our main focus is the marine world. Not everyone realises that some of the world’s most polluting vehicles are ships. Compared with cars, which use a more refined diesel, ships churn out a horrendous amount of emissions through bunker fuel diesel.

Historically we haven’t worried too much about pollutants generated out at sea, but the damage large vessels are causing is becoming all too apparent.

BSW – You’ve already introduced fuel cells to our very own Bristol Harbour, haven’t you?

AE – We have. You might have travelled around the harbour in Hydrogenesis, which was the first fuel-cell powered passenger boat in the UK and is just entering its seventh year servicing tourists and locals. The technology is reliable and makes the boat very quiet – plus it doesn’t pump out noxious exhaust gases or create diesel slicks that pollute the water.

It’s great working with local Bristol companies to bring this kind of technology and engineering to Brunel’s city.

BSW – Are you only working in the marine domain?

AE – No. In parallel to our marine work, we have introduced UPS/back-up systems and clean portable generators. Most businesses are completely reliant on systems and servers and when they fail, conventional generators only provide a short blast of emergency power. Our AurigaGen system combines a UPS and back-up function to provide longer endurance power, seamless continuity and a clean alternative. It’s an ideal option for companies where installing large, polluting and noisy diesel generators just isn’t an option, and for those who are serious about reducing their carbon emissions.

The AurigaGen portable generator is designed to be used to power lighting systems for construction sites and events, security systems, refrigeration, IT support – among many other applications.

BSW – You’ve also had recent success powering forklifts?

AE – Yes. We’ve been working with Bristol Forklifts to improve productivity in the materials handling industry. One of the main problems we’re able to solve is the frustrating amount of downtime created when traditional batteries in pallet loader forklifts need recharging.

Fuel cells refuel in minutes, enabling multi-shift operation and constant power across the duty cycle. This allows drivers to move more items in less time, and warehouses regain the space previously devoted to battery charging for their goods – all with zero emissions.

Thanks for talking to us, Jas. To find out more about Auriga Energy, including their mission to regenerate Bristol’s marine heritage with clean power, visit their website www.auriga-energy.com.