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HomeAutomobileMight fuel-cell conversions assist clear up long-haul diesel trucking?

Might fuel-cell conversions assist clear up long-haul diesel trucking?


Along with constructing new zero-emission vans, what if older diesel vans have been transformed to hydrogen fuel-cell energy? Two such initiatives have been introduced earlier this week.

Daimler Truck North America and diesel-engine producer Cummins will replace older Daimler-built Freightliner Cascadia semi vans with Cummins-supplied fuel-cell powertrains, the 2 corporations introduced Wednesday.

The businesses plan to have the primary vans prepared by 2024. By then, Daimler additionally expects to have ramped up manufacturing of the battery-electric eCascadia, which was unveiled in production-ready type the identical day because the fuel-cell announcement.

Freightliner Cascadia semi truck

Freightliner Cascadia semi truck

Startup Hyzon Motors is pitching its personal fuel-cell conversion program as a method to get cleaner vans on the street extra shortly. The corporate stated in a press launch that, because of supply-chain points, the present wait time for a brand new truck chassis is as much as 16 months. Changing present chassis supplies a shortcut.

Hyzon plans to supply 110-kw and 200-kw fuel-cell stacks. It stated examples of the latter will start testing by the tip of 2022, with a industrial launch after that. The stacks can be manufactured at Hyzon’s Illinois manufacturing facility.

Hyzon Motors hydrogen fuel-cell stack

Hyzon Motors hydrogen fuel-cell stack

Different corporations have expressed curiosity in constructing new fuel-cell vans. In 2021, Common Motors and Navistar introduced plans to construct 2,000 fuel-cell semis “within the close to time period.” Toyota and Kenworth have been demonstrating “Challenge Portal” prototypes in drayage service on the Ports of Los Angeles and Lengthy Seashore for just a few years at this level.

Maybe essentially the most bold is the California Gas Cell Partnership commerce group, which plans to place 70,000 fuel-cell vans on the street by 2035, supported by 200 newly-built hydrogen stations.

However whereas industrial vans are seen as a extra viable possibility for gasoline cells than passenger vehicles at this level, it is attainable that even that window of alternative is closing. Battery-electric autos will seemingly have sufficient vary for all however long-haul purposes, current evaluation claimed, leaving fuel-cell vans as a small area of interest.

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