Scottish hydrogen-fuelled HGV with 310 mile range on the horizon

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Zero-emission, long-range hydrogen-powered commercial vehicle manufacturer Hydrogen Vehicle Systems (HVS) has unveiled a 5.5-tonne hydrogen commercial vehicle, the predecessor of a zero-emission 40-tonne hydrogen HGV with a promised range of 310 miles.

Scottish hydrogen-fuelled HGV with 310 mile range on the horizon
Photo credits @ HVS

Hydrogen Vehicle Systems (HVS) is a new UK-based hydrogen vehicle emerging original equipment manufacturer  in the heavy commercial vehicle segment. A couple of weeks ago, the company unveiled its 5.5-tonne technology demonstrator, developed from initial design to full dynamic prototype in just 10 months, showcasing some of the technology that will power HVS’ HGV.

The manufacturer says it is going to launch an all-new zero-emission 40-tonne hydrogen HGV featuring a unique powertrain and radical cab design. That would make it the first indigenous UK Hydrogen HGV designed and built from the ground up.

The company has reinvented the commercial vehicle design to optimise range, payload, weight distribution, direct vision, and the aerodynamics and create an ergonomically-practical cab design.

Commenting on the unveiling of the 5.5-ton lorry concept, CEO Jawad Khursheed said:

“This technology demonstrator showcases our ground-breaking hydrogen-electric commercial vehicle design and advanced powertrain technology, a precursor to our HGV model. Fuelled by close-coupled green hydrogen (hydrogen produced directly by renewable energy sources such as hydro, wind or solar) our zero-emission trucks are a key part of decarbonising the logistics sector. Hydrogen is the perfect fuel for the haulage industry, offering long ranges and quick refuelling thanks to stations easily integrated into key transport networks.

At the moment, not many specifications are known about the coming 40-ton model, but the company’s announcement provides us with some details.

For example, the HVS tractor units will be built on an all-new chassis, designed in-house around the hydrogen powertrain, which consists of pressurised hydrogen cylinders, fuel cells, an energy storage system and eAxle.

“The unique ground-up design brings innovation in packaging, performance, efficiency, weight, range, consumption, maintenance, and lifecycle benefits. The technology demonstrator’s unique design allows significantly improved aerodynamics compared with current ICE trucks,” the statement reads.

Consequent benefits should include enhanced fuel efficiency on long-haul runs and improved spatial ergonomics within the cab, including better access and more room at the controls.

Also, according to the company, the fuel cell will permit longer range, higher load-carrying capacity, and faster refuelling than would be possible using Lithium-Ion battery technology alone: typical refuelling time is comparable to diesel.

“It is in the long-distance HGV segment that hydrogen fuel cells offer the most advantages,” says HVS.

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