Yesterday, I talked about an alternative hydrogen refueling infrastructure for cars and today I would like to talk about a “standard” hydrogen refueling infrastructure for long-haul trucks.
A couple of weeks ago I went to the NHA Conference and took a look at the Vision Tyrano hydrogen fuel cell hybrid class-8 truck firsthand. The idea at that point for Vision was to introduce a zero emissions heavy duty vehicle into the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, Ca in order to help clean up emissions.
Over a year ago I talked about Asemblon’s plans to introduce Hydrnol, a hydrogen rich liquid chemical carrier that can be used to produce pure hydrogen and that is easily transported and recycled. Now, I’ve learned that the two companies have teamed up in order to establish a nationwide hydrogen refueling infrastructure for trucks. In fact, Vision Industries has signed an agreement in an exclusive licensing agreement to sell Hydrnol to the trucking industry from coast to coast.
Vision and Asemblon don’t see the rollout of a nationwide hydrogen trucking infrastructure anywhere as daunting as one aimed a passenger cars. According to Vision, “While that may be the case for an infrastructure rollout for fuel cell passenger vehicles, Vision looks at the big rig market from a different perspective. In 2006, the U.S. consumed 180.2 billion gallons of transportation fuels, of which 23.8 billion gallons (or 13.2-percent) were diesel consumed by combination highway trucks. There are approximately 1,200 diesel truck stops in the U.S., with Pilot Travel Center and Flying J established as the two largest truck stop chains, each utilizing approximately 300 stations to cover the U.S. from coast-to-coast and border-to-border.
“Since Hydrnol is an easy-to-handle liquid, an infrastructure roll-out utilizing existing fueling equipment is very straightforward. Installing Hydrnol storage and dispensing infrastructure at an existing truck stop is estimated at $200,000 to $300,000 per station. Therefore, a 300 station, nationwide Hydrnol infrastructure rollout, accessing 13.2-percent of the U.S. transportation fuel marketplace can be completed for less than $100 million.”
The pairing of these two partners may not be perfect but it’s pretty close. Vision Industries needs a hydrogen solution for propelling long haul trucks 650 miles at highway speeds before refueling and Hydrnol provides this. Asemblon needs a commitment from a major hydrogen vehicle maker in order to manufacture, distribute and recycle its product and Vision Industries provides this.
Like I’ve stated before, the national hydrogen car infrastructure may be the last domino to fall. Before it does, hydrogen powered forklifts, trucks, boats, planes, UAVs, trains, motorcycles and other vehicles may already have been commercialized and provided adequate H2 refueling infrastructure. A nationwide hydrogen truck refueling infrastructure and the reduced emissions and reduced dependence upon fossil fuels that it would provide will certainly be a giant leap for mankind in the right direction.