A $15 million project to develop and demonstrate long range zero emission fuel cell hybrid trucks, was recently announced by the Alberta government.
Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA) is contributing more than $7.3 million to the Alberta Zero-Emissions Truck Electrification Collaboration (AZETEC) project, led by the Alberta Motor Transport Association.
This project will feature the development of two long range fuel cell electric trucks (FCET) for operation between Edmonton and Calgary. These fuel cell hybrid trucks will be powered by Ballard Power Systems next generation, proton exchange membrane fuel cell engine, integrated along with a lithium ion battery pack into a hybrid electric drive by Nordresa, on a Freightliner Class 8 truck platform.
The fueling infrastructure for the project will be generated by Praxair Services, Canada Inc. leveraging existing Oil & Gas hydrogen infrastructure and transported under a “drop and swap” model that will move fuel between the Praxair facility and a centralized depot in Edmonton. The tractor bodies in which the hydrogen fuel cell electric technology will be deployed will be provided by Freightliner/Daimler.
This project intends to develop and demonstrate a 700-km plus range zero emission truck. These trucks will demonstrate a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions based on the improved fuel efficiency of the fuel cell hybrid drivetrain, with a pathway to even greater emissions reductions in the future as carbon is sequestered at the hydrogen generation facility.
The AZETEC project is the first transportation technology project to be conducted in the newly opened 7-acre Phase 1 of the AMTA training and testing facility at the Edmonton International Airport. This facility was built to function as a commercial transportation hub for safety training development and delivery, as well as various research and technology innovation. Phase 2 of the 4 planned stages of this development is currently in the design stage and expands the 5-acre training and testing surface an additional 13 acres. This will allow for a wider range of applied transportation research, testing of new technologies, and advanced driver training.
Chris Nash, president, Alberta Motor Transport Association, said, ” This is a very exciting project for the AMTA and our member companies. This initiative is primarily about moving freight on Alberta’s highways with zero emissions, but it is also about the future of the Alberta economy. Alberta is in the transportation fuel business, and that business is changing. The AZETEC project demonstrates that Alberta’s commercial transportation industry is leading the transition towards innovative, zero-emission transportation that meets the province’s unique needs.”