European scoop: first 44-tonne hydrogen truck on the roads
A heavy truck without emissions and remarkably quiet? It exists and is already working in our logistics. We are the first to test a 44-tonne electric truck on hydrogen in Europe. The fuel cell on board of the vehicle converts hydrogen into electricity to recharge the batteries on the way. This test truck only emits water vapour and works with green hydrogen, generated with green power.
40 + 300 km range
The electric tractor is equipped with a Li-ion battery and can ride for about 40 km purely on electricity. In our test combination, the tractor is connected with a trailer that has a fuel cell on board, with which the battery can be recharged on the way. Filled with 30 kg of hydrogen, this fuel cell or 'range extender' can increase the truck's range with about 300 km.
The hydrogen truck was developed by VDL Groep in Eindhoven, a renowned manufacturer of a/o electric buses
Clean and quiet
We intend to test the heavy hydrogen truck for 6 months in all kinds of circumstances and for different tasks, among which deliveries to stores. In this way, we want to acquire knowledge and experience in electric transport of goods. And to prove that hydrogen technology can be very useful to make heavy logistics more sustainable. Indeed, hydrogen is a renewable energy support that does not cause harmful emissions. In pure electric mode, the test truck is very quiet, which fits in with our pursuit of more silent deliveries to the stores.
The hydrogen truck only emits water vapour and is remarkably silent.
Pioneer in hydrogen and electric transport
We have always believed in the importance of hydrogen and electricity to make mobility and power supply more sustainable. Since 2004, we already invested 6 million euros in innovative applications using hydrogen. We have been producing green hydrogen since a few years, and we use it as energy support for forklift trucks and passenger cars. Since the end of 2018, we offer hydrogen in our public DATS 24 fuel station in Halle.
We intend to build even more public hydrogen stations and we are contributing to an industrial installation in Zeebrugge to convert the energy from wind farms at sea into green hydrogen. Finally, we want to achieve pure electric transport. To move trailers on our logistic sites, two electric terminal tractors are already operational. The batteries recharge using local green energy.
The hydrogen truck test fits in with the European demonstration project ‘Hydrogen region 2.0’ to develop know-how and experience with large-scale hydrogen applications in logistics. By widely sharing the experience gained, Hydrogen region 2.0. wants to inspire other large logistic centres to use hydrogen-powered vehicles as well. The project is made possible with financial support by the European union in the framework of the Interreg Vlaanderen-Nederland programme.
With this initiative, we contribute to the following Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.