Olympus Corp. (TSE:7733) has commissioned QinetiQ Ltd., the largest private research organization in Europe, to develop a hydrogen generator for fuel cells that the Japanese firm can use as the power source in a line of portable devices it plans to design.
Olympus envisions devices like wearable sensors and sensor cameras.
These devices will be powered by fuel cells, which combine hydrogen fuel with oxygen from the air to generate electricity.
For these fuel cells, Olympus has commissioned QinetiQ to develop a tiny hydrogen generator based on ammonia borane -- a solid that is nontoxic, recyclable, and able to supply hydrogen for the fuel cell with a high efficiency of 20 per cent.
QinetiQ is to have a prototype ready in 2008.