Volvo Commercial Truck: Testing of Hydrogen Fuel Cell Semis initiated

Volvo’s commercial trucking division is experimenting with hydrogen fuel cell semi-trucks to get ahead of the maturing approaches.

With fuel cells created by CellCentric, a joint venture of Volvo and Daimler Truck Automotive Group, Volvo claims its trucks are competent of 1,000 kilometers of range (about 621 miles) and can be refueled within 15 minutes.

Volvo Trucks has been “inventing this technology for some years now,” said company president Roger Alm in a message this week. Hydrogen fuel cells will be applicable for long-distance hauling and could work in nations with limited battery charging infrastructure, Alm said. The company began building battery-electric trucks in 2018, but they still aren’t broadly in service in the US. Now with hydrogen fuel cell trucks, Alm voices that he expects growth in the supply of clean hydrogen in the following years.

Hydrogen fuel cells and battery electric vehicles (BEV) are comparable in that they are both propelled by an electric motor. Still, the former generates its electricity from the compressed hydrogen it carries, while the latter stores’ electricity generated from the area power grid.

As a result, both technologies are emissions-free “at the tailpipe,” meaning they do not emit any carbon in motion. But significant emissions can be released depending on transporting hydrogen gas to stations. At the same time, BEVs are as clean as the power grid it depends on — which can vary from green origins like solar or dirty sources like coal.

A hurdle for hydrogen fuel cell vehicles resumes being the scarce availability of refueling stations. Smaller than 60 stations are operational in the US, all in California. And according to the California Fuel Cell Association website, the number of hydrogen fuel stations will grow to just over 100 locations by mid-2023.

The most practicable use case for hydrogen fuel cell vehicles is commercial trucking. With Volvo’s new truck, the company merges automakers like Toyota, which spearheads the tech in commercial and passenger applications, and GM, which is functioning with Navistar on a 500-plus miles semi and is also employing the tech to build mobile power stations.

The hazardous consequences of pollutants from conventional fuel vehicles have forced the scientific world to move towards environmentally friendly energy origins. Though we have various renewable energy sources, hydrogen is the perfect one to employ as an energy source for vehicles. Hydrogen is an energy carrier, like electricity, that can provide incredible energy. Onboard hydrogen storage in cars is an essential factor that should be considered when developing fuel cell vehicles.

This study examined a recent development in hydrogen fuel cell engines to scrutinize the feasibility of using hydrogen as significant fuel in transportation techniques. A fuel cell is an electrochemical instrument that can create electricity by permitting chemical gases and oxidants as reactants. The fuel cell separates the cation and an anion in the reactant with anodes and electrolytes to build electricity. Fuel cells use reactants that are not harmful to the environment and have water as a chemical reaction product. As hydrogen is one of the most efficient energy runners, the fuel cell can produce direct current (DC) power to run the electric car. One can have a sustainable hybrid vehicle by integrating a hydrogen fuel cell with batteries and the control system with strategies.

Hydrogen storage is one of the multiple critical research issues in developing FCVs. Hydrogen storage systems are evolving to introduce new methods to meet customers’ needs. However, due to hydrogen’s low energy density, storing enough onboard vehicles to obtain adequate driving range without the storage container is too large or too heavy isn’t easy.

Like all-electric vehicles, fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) employ electricity to power an electric motor. In contrast to other electric vehicles, FCEVs produce electricity operating a fuel cell powered by hydrogen rather than pulling electricity from only a battery. In the vehicle design process, the vehicle manufacturer defines the vehicle’s power by the size of the electric motor(s) that receives electric energy from the appropriately sized fuel cell and battery hybrid.

Although automakers could design an FCEV with plug-in capabilities to charge the battery, most FCEVs today use the battery for recapturing braking energy. It furnishes extra power during short acceleration events, smoothing out the power delivered from the fuel cell with the opportunity to idle or turn off the fuel cell during low power needs. The quantity of energy stored on board is specified by the size of the hydrogen fuel tank. It is different from an all-electric vehicle, where the amount of power and energy available is closely related to the battery’s size.

Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles (FCVs) are comparable to electric vehicles (EVs) because they use an electric motor, somewhat of an internal combustion engine, to dominion the wheels. However, while EVs operate on batteries that must be stuffed into recharge, FCVs develop their electricity onboard. Hydrogen (H2) gas in a fuel cell from the vehicle’s fuel tank blends with oxygen (O2) from the air to yield electricity with only water and heat as byproducts.

Several auto factories are selling or leasing FCVs for special needs, primarily in California, where some hydrogen fueling stations live. Hydrogen infrastructure is also building up in other places around the nation. Stations are being designed or built in the Northeast and Hawaii, and fuel cell transit buses are already rolling the streets in metropolia like Boston, Massachusetts, and Flint, Michigan. There are plans to develop FCV offerings over the next few years as infrastructure develops and the technology continues to mature.

Hydrogen fuel can be produced from water. In an electrolysis process, electricity is used to separate water into H2 and O2. The electricity can arrive from renewable energy sources like wind and solar.

FCVs are zero-emission vehicles, like electric vehicles, containing no smog-related or greenhouse gas tailpipe emissions. Instead, emissions are constructed by producing and transporting hydrogen fuel.

While hydrogen is abundant in the cosmos, it must be separated from other combinations to be used as fuel. This methodology can be energy intensive. The quantity of emissions associated with producing hydrogen fuels relies on the source of hydrogen and the production method. Nowadays, most hydrogen made for use as a fuel comes from natural gas, but hydrogen fuel can also be produced from water, oil, coal, and plant material. Hydrogen can even be created from your trash! Pilot projects have utilized landfill gas and wastewater to make hydrogen fuel.