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Daimler Trucks and Cummins Are Working on Hydrogen Fuel Cell Trucks for North America

Two big names in the trucking world are joining forces with a power systems expert to bring hydrogen fuel cell trucks to North America. Freightliner Cascadia trucks equipped with Cummins hydrogen fuel cell powertrains are gearing up to prove that they can stand next to battery-electric versions when it comes to efficient and emissions-free transportation.
A Cummins hydrogen fuel cell powertrain will be integrated on Cascadia trucks, together with Daimler Truck North America 7 photos
Hydrogen Truck Concept RenderingCascadia TruckCascadia TruckCascadia TruckCascadia TruckCascadia Truck
Daimler Truck North America (DTNA), the largest heavy-duty truck manufacturer in North America, will work with Cummins to upfit Cascadia trucks with fuel cell powertrains. “Depending on the customer application and energy infrastructure considerations, hydrogen-powered vehicles can absolutely complement battery-powered electric vehicles in accelerating our carbon-neutral journey,” said Rakesh Aneja, Vice President and Chief of eMobility at DTNA.

The two partners haven’t released too many details regarding this collaboration, other than the fact that the modified Cascadia trucks will boast Cummins’ fourth-generation fuel cell powertrain, claiming to offer even better power density and durability. It won’t be a fast process since the hydrogen fuel cell trucks will also have to be validated before reaching the first customers. Daimler Truck is expected to start delivering the first hydrogen trucks by 2024.

Other truck manufacturers also claim to be close to introducing regular operations for hydrogen trucks. The Rochester-based Hyzon announced last year that it was teaming up with Chart Industries to develop a fuel cell truck that would be powered by liquid hydrogen, which would increase its range to 1,000 miles (1,600 km). Previous to that, the same company had introduced a pioneering 154-ton hydrogen fuel cell-powered truck.

The controversial Nikola also claimed that its Tre FCEV (fuel cell electric vehicle) prototypes traveled from Arizona to California on a single hydrogen tank at the beginning of this year.

On the other hand, the operators’ interest in FCEVs is also growing. For example, in just a few years, DHL could be using the Riversimple van for delivery services. Until then, the development of fuel cell alternatives, including heavy trucks, continues.

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