Bud de­liv­ery goes emis­sions-free with fuel cell elec­tric trucks

Motor Equipment News - - DIESEL INDUSTRY -

An­heuser-Busch and Nikola Mo­tor Com­pany have an­nounced that Amer­ica’s lead­ing brewer has placed an order for up to 800 hy­dro­gen-elec­tric pow­ered semi-trucks from the pi­o­neer in hy­dro­gen-elec­tric re­new­able tech­nol­ogy.

The zero-emis­sion trucks – which will be able to travel be­tween 800km and 11,900km, and be re­filled within 20 min­utes, re­duc­ing idle time – are ex­pected to be in­te­grated into An­heuser-Busch’s ded­i­cated fleet begin­ning in 2020.

The fuel cells fit­ted to the Nikola One truck cho­sen by An­heuser-Busch use hy­dro­gen to pro­duce elec­tric­ity (with its only emis­sion water) which is then used to power 800V AC mo­tors, giv­ing up to 745kW and 2,700Nm of torque, with 0-100km/h ac­cel­er­a­tion in just over 30 sec­onds – twice as fast as an equiv­a­lent diesel truck – and equiv­a­lent fuel con­sump­tion of 18 to 15 litres/100km, which is half that of a diesel.

The trans­mis­sion is a two-speed au­to­mated with direct drive and low-noise gears, and ac­tive de­scent con­trol comes standard, aided by the de­cel­er­a­tion recharg­ing fea­ture.

Nikola has part­nered with Nel ASA as the sole equip­ment sup­plier to cre­ate the largest hy­dro­gen net­work in the world that will ini­tially cover more than 3,200km and in­clude 16 sta­tions. Hy­dro­gen gas is made on-site at each sta­tion, and re­fu­elling takes place via a noz­zle sim­i­lar to that found at a reg­u­lar diesel pump.

An­heuser-Busch aims to con­vert its en­tire long-haul ded­i­cated fleet to re­new­able pow­ered trucks by 2025. Nikola’s cutting-edge tech­nol­ogy will en­able the brewer to achieve this mile­stone across its long-haul loads, while also help­ing to im­prove road safety through the trucks’ ad­vanced sur­round view­ing sys­tem.

“At An­heuser-Busch we’re con­tin­u­ously search­ing for ways to im­prove sus­tain­abil­ity across our en­tire value chain and drive our in­dus­try for­ward,” said Michel Douk­eris, CEO of An­heuser-Busch. “The trans­port in­dus­try is one that is ripe for in­no­va­tive so­lu­tions and Nikola is lead­ing the way with hy­dro­gen-elec­tric, zero-emis­sion ca­pa­bil­i­ties. We are very ex­cited by the pos­si­bil­i­ties our part­ner­ship with them can of­fer.”

“Hy­dro­gen-elec­tric tech­nol­ogy is the fu­ture of lo­gis­tics and we’re proud to be lead­ing the way,” added Trevor Mil­ton, CEO of Nikola Mo­tor Com­pany.

“An­heuser-Busch has a long his­tory of in­vest­ing in pro­gres­sive, sus­tain­able tech­nol­ogy and we are ex­cited to part­ner with them to bring the largest hy­dro­gen net­work in the world to the USA. By 2028, we an­tic­i­pate hav­ing over 700 hy­dro­gen sta­tions across the USA and Canada. With nearly nine bil­lion US dol­lars in pre-order reser­va­tions, we are build­ing to order, not spec­u­la­tion, and are very ex­cited for what’s to come.”

The part­ner­ship with Nikola will con­trib­ute to An­heuser-Busch’s re­cently an­nounced 2025 sus­tain­abil­ity goals, which in­clude re­duc­ing CO2 emis­sions by 25 per­cent across its value chain. Once fully im­ple­mented, the car­bon re­duc­tions gained from these 800 trucks will re­duce the brewer’s car­bon emis­sions from lo­gis­tics by more than 18 per­cent – equiv­a­lent to tak­ing more than 13,000 pas­sen­ger ve­hi­cles off the road an­nu­ally.

An­heuser-Busch owns and op­er­ates 22 brew­eries, in­clud­ing the fa­mous Bud­weiser brand, 20 dis­trib­u­tor­ships and 22 agri­cul­tural and pack­ag­ing facilities, em­ploy­ing more than 18,000 peo­ple across the United States.

Nikola Mo­tor Com­pany de­signs and man­u­fac­tures elec­tric ve­hi­cles, ve­hi­cle com­po­nents, en­ergy stor­age sys­tems, and elec­tric ve­hi­cle driv­e­trains.

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