AVL Test Systems, Inc. has been awarded the contract to provide electrification and fuel cell testing equipment to Nikola Motor Company (“Nikola”) for the first phase of its fuel cell development laboratory in Phoenix, Arizona.
“At AVL, we’re all about developing clean, efficient propulsion technology,” said Kyle Kimel, president of AVL Test Systems, Inc. “Nikola has some truly unique ideas, and it’s exciting to help bring this vision to life.”
Nikola’s new facility will enable development, validation and testing of its entire fuel cell system and vehicle. AVL’s advanced testing hardware – including a heavy-duty chassis dynamometer, fuel cell system testbed, fuel cell durability testbeds, and a high-voltage battery test container – will be run with AVL’s lab management suite, a set of software that acts as the backbone of the entire lab. This powerful combination will allow Nikola to test components independently or as a complete powertrain system, providing flexibility and shortening the development process.
“With the pace of change in our industry, it’s no longer enough to fill a testing facility with the best equipment,” Kimel said. “Developers need to consider the big picture of the lab and understand how the system works together as a whole – this is where AVL really thrives.”
With years of facility engineering expertise and a history of executing projects of this scale, AVL has the resources to support Nikola’s growing engineering team through execution services, facility design, and trainings.
AVL has been a long-time leader in fuel cell development for the light-duty industry. Most notably, AVL and HyCentA (Hydrogen Center Austria, TU Graz) commissioned Europe’s most modern fuel cell system integration testbed, a highly dynamic system for a wide spectrum of applications under real load conditions and in dynamic operation.
“In this new lab, Nikola will be able to apply these same proven methodologies and tools to the heavy-duty market,” said Kimel.