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Daniel HISSEL, winner of the CNRS 2020 Innovation Medal
Full professor at the University of Franche-Comté, researcher at FEMTO-ST Institute and co-founder of a start-up on efficient hydrogen fuel cells, Daniel HISSEL is one of the four national winners of the CNRS 2020 Innovation Medal.
Created in 2011, the CNRS Innovation medal recognizes each year personalities whose exceptional research has led to significant technological, economic, therapeutic or social innovations, thereby enhancing French scientific research.
Hydrogen fuel cells are increasingly used in the energy and transportation sectors, with numerous applications emerging such as electric generators, industrial vehicles, and electric backup systems. Daniel Hissel, who is a full professor at the Université de Franche-Comté and a researcher at the FEMTO-ST Institute (CNRS/Université de Franche-Comté/Université de Technologie Belfort-Montbéliard/ ENSMM), conducts real-time diagnostics of hydrogen fuel cells in order to improve their performance and extend their lifespan via a dual hardware-software approach. He also designs algorithms to optimise hybrid electric systems in order to increase their energy efficiency. In less than fifteen years, his research has brought this emerging research field to an advanced level of technological maturity. "The diffusion of knowledge from CNRS laboratories to society is highly important for me, as it makes it possible to have a direct impact on the economic, societal, and environmental fields," the scientist explains. His project for a fuel cell system designed to power a new type of environment-friendly, silent electric genset received support from the pre-maturation programme managed by the Bourgogne Franche-Comté region, and later from the SATT Sayens maturation programme. The H2SYS start-up, which was founded in 2017, values his work successfully. The company has a ten-strong workforce, and continues to expand.
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