‘UK’s first hydrogen truck’ launches

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Electric and hydrogen truck manufacturer Tevva is launching the first hydrogen fuel cell-supported heavy goods vehicle, manufactured, designed, and mass-produced in the UK.

The Tilbury-headquartered manufacturer has so far raised US$140m in funding and unveiled its hydrogen-electric vehicle alongside its latest full-battery electric HGV at the Road Transport Expo in Warwickshire.

Hydrogen has been used safely in buses and other vehicles in more than twenty countries for many years and has a higher energy density than lithium-ion batteries or even diesel. Because of these properties, it is particularly attractive for use in larger, commercial vehicles.

Tevva’s fuel cell system tops up the battery, extending the vehicle’s range and allowing the truck to carry heavier loads over longer distances. One advantage of using the fuel cell as a range extender, rather than the primary source of power, allows Tevva to use smaller, cheaper and lighter fuel cells and operate these at the highest possible efficiency.

Tevva’s 7.5 ton hydrogen-electric truck meets demanding duty cycles for most urban and extra-urban use cases, with a safe, reliable range of up to 310 miles (500km). Hydrogen refueling typically takes a similar time to diesel truck refueling (5-20 mins) and the dual-use of both battery-electric and hydrogen energy sources should ease the transition away from fossil fuels as the decarbonization of the transport industry continues.

Tevva CEO and founder Asher Bennett said, “We are excited to launch our hydrogen-electric HGV, creating a landmark moment for Tevva and UK manufacturing. We firmly believe that the post-fossil fuel future, which is quickly approaching, will see a new range of technologies and fuels take center stage in the transport industry. By embracing hydrogen, we are futureproofing ourselves, our clients and the industries and communities they operate in.”

Asher added, “I am extremely proud of the hard work the team at Tevva has put into this vehicle. We have reached this milestone by leveraging our years of experience designing, innovating and manufacturing dual-energy vehicles.”

In 2019, HGVs contributed 18% of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector, according to UK government figures (Photo: Tevva)

Transport Minister Trudy Harrison said, “Hydrogen fuel cells and other zero emission technology will be vital in helping us decarbonize transport. A thriving UK hydrogen industry could not only help us meet our climate change obligations, but also support thousands of jobs across the country in years to come,” adding, “UK-based manufacturers like Tevva continue to build on the skills and expertise we have in hydrogen in the UK, developing new technologies, supporting economic growth, and working towards net zero.”

Tevva’s proprietary software systems also operate battery and hydrogen fuel cells at the highest efficiencies to optimize cost-effectiveness, carbon effectiveness, resilience and refueling convenience.  Alongside its customer support, Tevva will offer hydrogen services to customers, helping customers to access sustainable and affordable hydrogen supplies safely and conveniently, alongside their purchase or lease of Tevva Hydrogen Trucks.

Ben Nyland, Loop Energy President & CEO, said, “We are extremely happy to provide our fuel cell system to power the revolutionary zero-emissions truck Tevva is bringing to market. From the tender process through to the integration of the first vehicles, we have been consistently impressed with the vision and execution of the entire Tevva team.”

Zoe Hall, Head of Competitions and Projects, Advanced Propulsion Centre, said,  “The launch of this truck, with its hydrogen fuel cell range extender, is an exciting outcome of the APC-funded project to completely eliminate CO2 at the tailpipe and lower the total cost of ownership compared to existing diesel vehicles.”

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Benedict is editorial assistant, social media manager and staff writer across several aviation, automotive and performance technology titles published by Mark Allen Business. He is a graduate of the University of Southampton and spends his free time organising comedy shows, playing basketball loudly and guitar quietly.

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