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Hydro Industries water purification technology for India, powered by fuel cells

Two UK companies are collaborating to help supply water purification technology across India, with Intelligent Energy fuel cells providing electric power for water purification systems developed by Hydro Industries.

Welsh company Hydro Industries is collaborating with Intelligent Energy in Loughborough to support the commercialisation of Hydro’s electro-based water purification technology across India. The partnership could result in Hydro’s technology being powered by Intelligent Energy fuel cells and deployed at thousands of sites over the next five years.

Intelligent Energy specialises in the development of cost-effective, efficient hydrogen PEM fuel cell systems for its business partners and their global mass markets. The company recently announced that it will deliver power management solutions for telecom towers across India, through its wholly owned Indian operating business, Essential Energy.

Essential Energy’s power management solutions will facilitate keeping India’s mobile phone networks working during the country’s frequent power outages, with Intelligent Energy’s fuel cell systems replacing – over time – the more expensive diesel generators currently used. The new collaboration will see Hydro’s technology powered by Essential Energy’s power portfolio, offering Essential Energy an additional customer for its power.

Hydro’s proprietary technology uses electricity to treat water, removing the need for bulk liquid chemicals or large volumes of biomass. With adaptive software and no moving parts, system maintenance is straightforward, and supervisory control can be carried out remotely.

‘This collaboration follows a series of successful river and bore-hole water purification trials already conducted on various sources in India,’ says Phil Morgan, Chairman and Principal Scientist at Hydro Industries. ‘The positive implications are enormous, and we are delighted to have the opportunity to work with Intelligent Energy to meet this challenge.’

‘We are very excited about our relationship with Hydro,’ adds Dr Henri Winand, CEO of Intelligent Energy. ‘The combination of Hydro’s leadership in water treatment technology, coupled with Intelligent Energy’s expertise in providing efficient power management solutions, will enable the delivery of clean water where it is needed most across India.’

India has one of the world’s fastest growing economies, and its rapid urbanisation is expected to lead to a 40% increase in domestic demand for water over the next decade.[1] It is estimated that around 720 million of India’s 1.25 billion population lack access to clean drinking water.[2] Around 100 000 people die of water-related illnesses annually,[3] and according to UNICEF, waterborne diseases cost the Indian economy US$600 million in lost production and medical treatment.[4]


  1. Water Sector in India: Emerging investment opportunities, Ernst and Young, September 2011.
  2. Let’s drink to that: How Sarjaval and Waterlife are supplying clean drinking water at affordable costs, Business Today,19 August 2012.
  3. Water-borne diseases in India,, 31 May 2013.
  4. Child Survival Fact Sheet, Water and Sanitation, UNICEF.

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Energy efficiency  •  Energy infrastructure  •  Energy storage including Fuel cells  •  Policy, investment and markets