A European consortium of 25 leading organizations in the hydrogen sector is joining forces to define, develop and test the first standardized heavy-duty fuel cell modules. This development could be the game changer that the fuel cell industry needs to increase the competitiveness of the market by enabling competition, cost reduction and mass production.
The consortium operating together as “StasHH” consists of 11 suppliers of fuel cell modules, 9 original equipment manufacturer and 5 research, testing, engineering and / or knowledge institutes. It will standardize physical dimensions, flow and digital interfaces, test protocols and safety requirements of the fuel cell modules, which can be stacked and integrated in heavy-duty applications such as forklifts, buses, trucks, trains, ships and construction equipment.
The format nomenclature for batteries has become well established over time and became known as the “AA Series” nomenclature and has resulted in rapid adoption of battery technologies in a wide variety of applications. A similar nomenclature, referred to as the “HH Series”, is envisaged by the StasHH consortium for fuel cell modules, which are the core of any fuel cell system. In reaching an industry consensus between fuel cell module suppliers and OEMs on the standard, the fuel cell module suppliers in the consortium will design and develop standardized modules for different power classes. The modules will be tested by the test centers in the consortium.
The consortium will receive 7.5 million euros in funding from the European Union, through FCHJU. The total budget is 15.2 million euros.
Bart Biebuyck, Executive Director, Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU): “We are proud to support this strategically important project as it represents an important step towards decarbonising the transport sector. StasHH’s project results will not only drive competition among fuel cell suppliers, but also enrich the offering and make it easier to integrate fuel cell systems into heavy-duty powertrains. With its specific focus on the heavy-duty truck sector, this project will play a vital role in achieving the common goal of 100,000 trucks by 2030, as set out in December’s joint coalition statement by industry representatives. ”
Ruud Bouwman of VDL, member of the StasHH consortium adds: “Fuel cell modules of standard dimensions are a prerequisite for adaptation and acceptance of the many different stakeholders in the different application areas, which is why this project marks the beginning of a new era. In this way we can finally show the potential of hydrogen and break through ‘old’ prejudices. As a VDL partner in this project, we are eager to use these modules in all kinds of applications for a range of applications of our group companies. ”
Adwin Martens, director of WaterstofNet: ‘Standardization of technology and components is crucial for the further use of hydrogen applications. As WaterstofNet, we are therefore pleased to be a partner in the European StasHH project, in which standardized and universally applicable fuel cell modules will be developed. These modules will be cheaper and easier to integrate for a wide variety of applications. StasHH fits in seamlessly with the experiences we have gained with the demonstrations of a 27-ton rigid (H2Share) and a 44-ton rigid (Hydrogen Region 2.0), which show that the technology works, but that standardization is needed to make it more interesting for the market.
WaterstofNet offers its knowledge and experience in the field of hydrogen demonstrations in the Benelux in StasHH and is responsible for the development of exploitation processes and dissemination activities.