Volvo Trucks begin testing hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric trucks, prototype unveiled

The company says the technology will allow the trucks to run on hydrogen, emitting just water vapor from the tailpipe.

Volvo Trucks has started testing its fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) and plans to add the hydrogen-powered truck to its carbon-neutral product portfolio in the latter half of the decade. 

The company says the technology will allow the trucks to run on hydrogen, emitting just water vapor from the tailpipe. Furthermore, the trucks will be capable of producing their own electricity on board.

At present, the OEM has electric trucks and trucks powered by renewable fuels (such as biogas) in its product portfolio.

Roger Alm, President, Volvo Trucks said, “We have been developing this technology for some years now, and it feels great to see the first trucks successfully running on the test track. The combination of battery electric and fuel cell electric will enable our customers to completely eliminate CO2 exhaust emissions from their trucks, no matter transport assignments. Hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric trucks will be especially suitable for long distances and heavy, energy-demanding assignments. They could also be an option in countries where battery charging possibilities are limited,”

The operational range of the fuel cell electric trucks is said to be up to 1,000km, which in par with some diesel trucks while the refueling time is claimed to be less than 15 minutes. Furthermore, the truck is expected to weigh around 65-tonnes or higher. 

According to Volvo Trucks the onboard two hydrogen cells can generate upto 300 kW of electricity.

“We expect the supply of green hydrogen to increase significantly during the next couple of years, since many industries will depend on it to reduce CO2. However, we cannot wait to decarbonise transport, we are already running late. So, my clear message to all transport companies is to start the journey today with battery electric, biogas and the other options available. The fuel cell trucks will then be an important complement for longer and heavier transports in a few years from now”, concluded Alm.

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