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Jan Kratky: Developer, ePropulsion, BRP-Rotax

 

 

Jan is a development engineer for hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, and is part of the advanced engineering project team. He’s charged with bringing together all the parts of an alternative electric drive system: power inverter, electric motor, fuel cell, ensuring the highest levels of safety for the vehicle. He also works on the test bench to determine the parameters of an electric motor and make it suitable for the drive system.
 

What has motivated you to be part of the EV adventure?

Sustainable, environmentally friendly and quiet electric propulsion systems are key in the fight against climate change. And there’s still a lot of progress to be made in the design and development of electric vehicles to make them sufficiently autonomous and efficient. With BRP, I had the opportunity to be involved in developing innovative and powerful electric drive systems for powersports vehicles. To add my own ideas and experiences to the development process. Electric propulsion drive systems differ fundamentally from conventional internal combustion engines. That's what makes it fascinating and challenging.

My goal in my work is that, one day, BRP customers can say it was the best decision they ever made to buy an electric powersports vehicle. That's what drives me.
 

What are the challenges and the rewards?

To create powerful electric drive systems that are reliable, sustainable and environmentally friendly, we need a new approach compared to a conventional combustion engine. The design, the technology, the standards of an electric drive system are very different. And the entire automotive industry is working on this, pushing for vehicle electrification, so you can’t sit back and take your time. You have to keep an eye on what others are doing.

But solving technical issues gives me great pleasure. You can see progress being made and how your efforts have contributed to it. Every day you see the fruits of your labour. And when the vehicle is ready to drive for the first time, it makes me incredibly proud.

Also, we’re pushing forward as a team, all together, working to create something extraordinary. Everyone is an important part of the whole. Everyone contributes their ideas and experiences to the projects. And everyone is giving their best to reach our goals. Every day, you can feel the passion, and it’s super motivating!  
 

What might a future BRP vehicle look like?

Today, there’s a struggle between internal combustion engines, hybrid technology, and 100% electric vehicles. With the great potential of lithium-ion batteries, we can be pretty sure 100% EV will one day overtake the combustion engine in terms of autonomy, and electric will win the day. Till then, we have to find a compromise between hybridization and hydrogen fuel cells, to take on combustion engines.
 

“You can see progress being made and how your efforts have contributed to it.”