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Eberspächer positions itself in the fuel cell market

Luftversorgungskomponente von Vairex.
Air supply components from Vairex are used for fuel cells in stationary as well as mobile applications.
© Eberspächer

Eberspächer has acquired the US company ViCTORi, better known as Vairex Air Systems, with effect from July 2. The automotive supplier will thus be offering air supply components for fuel cell systems in the future.

With increasing decarbonization, hydrogen is gaining in importance as an energy carrier. »We are deliberately investing in a market of the future and want to grow purposefully with hydrogen and fuel cell technology,« says managing partner Martin Peters, explaining the investment. The Esslingen-based company is taking over 100 percent of the shares in the US company.

ViCTORi, which operates on the market as Vairex Air Systems, develops and produces air compressors for supplying cathode gas to fuel cells, as well as the associated components. By precisely controlling airflow and air pressure, this controls the power generated by the fuel cell. This makes the compressor a key component for the performance of fuel cells and contributes significantly to the efficiency, optimal design and durability of the overall system.

Future applications in trucks and buses

The technology is being used for fuel cells in both stationary and mobile applications. These already include forklifts and industrial trucks for emission-free transportation. They are also used as range extenders in small delivery vehicles and in stationary systems for power generation.Thanks to the high reliability of the components, they can also be used in trucks or buses with fuel cells in the future.

As the overall market for fuel cell applications is growing strongly, Eberspächer is making targeted investments. According to market forecasts, the sales potential for fuel cell systems could amount to 8 billion US dollars worldwide in 2030.

US company with technology expertise

Vairex products have been on the market for over ten years. The company has shipped more than 15,000 air compressors to customers in 25 countries. With headquarters and manufacturing in Boulder, Colorado, and sales operations in Tokyo, Seoul, and Shanghai, the company has been most successful in the U.S. and Asian markets.

Ski Milburn, CEO of Vairex Air Systems, emphasizes, »After years of strong and recently accelerating growth, Vairex needs to expand its capacity and global presence to keep pace with the growth rate of the fuel cell industry. Eberspächer is a strong partner for this and we are very pleased to become a part of the group.« Milburn will remain in operational leadership with the current management team.

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