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The competitiveness of auto suppliers will depend on diversified power technologies led by hydrogen power

shutterstock_1650360277Most of the OE brand boosts their development in Hydrogen power
Mining Ultra-Heavy Trucks Powered by Hydrogen Already on the Road
Not only trucks, but even the huge mining machines and ore trucks used by mining companies, there have been many cases of trying to use hydrogen energy in full swing. Since mining-related equipment requires huge power, the use of lithium batteries requires extremely long charging time, which is not conducive to operational efficiency. The use of hydrogen energy has become a consensus in the industry.
In South Africa, Anglo American, ENGIE, Plug Power, and Ballard Power Systems have partnered to produce hydrogen-powered mining transport trucks, launching a zero-emission overweight truck with a payload of 290 tons, currently the world's largest heavy-duty hydrogen vehicle, with a 2 MW powertrain, including Ballard's eight-module powertrain fuel cell and Williams Advanced Engineering lithium battery power modules, integrated by First Mode major integrators of Anglo-American resource technology partners. The three companies plan to expand the production of transport models initially at the Mogalakwena mine and eventually to AngloAmerican’s other mining operations around the world.
Heavy industry giant Cummins and manufacturer Komatsu Manufacturing originally had close cooperation in construction and mining equipment with diesel engines as the main body. In June 2022, the two companies jointly announced that they will focus on hydrogen fuel cell solutions for large mining vehicles.
In Chile, Australian mining company Mining3 partnered with Engie to create the Hydra Consortium, joined by Ballard and Hexagon Purus, seeking to convert mining transporters to run on hydrogen through funding from the Chilean government. It is planned that by 2025, the entire fleet belonging to the Antofagasta copper mine will supply hydrogen using on-site solar electrolyzers.
First Mode is evaluating new fuel power sources and is set to work like current diesel power systems. When a truck encounters bumps on the road and immediately needs extra power, the power must be given immediately. Simultaneous addition of fuel systems and onboard energy storage needs to be replenished quickly and efficiently to minimize downtime. Trucks need to run in the leanest form factor possible to increase the weight the truck can carry. Under careful evaluation, a hydrogen energy vehicle was selected. The insight that hydrogen fuel can replace diesel is in line with Daimler's Benz.

Stellantis Opens the World's First Plant for Light Commercial Hydrogen Vehicle Production
Stellantis, which owns multiple brands under its umbrella, has strategically selected light commercial vehicles with considerable requirements for endurance as a representative of hydrogen energy. As early as 2021, the group has successively launched prototypes of several brands of commercial hydrogen energy vehicles, and in mid-December 2021, the first hydrogen vehicle of the Peugeot brand will start to leave the factory. In October 2022, it was announced that thanks to the flexibility of its manufacturing system, the Houdin plant in France will mass produce hydrogen vehicles for Peugeot, Citroen, and Opel light commercial vehicles. It will be the first in the world to produce hydrogen power, lithium batteries, and internal combustion engines. and other plants that combine three energy sources for commercial vehicles.
Customers of light commercial vehicles in Europe often demand long-range, fast refueling, and zero emissions without compromising payload capacity. Therefore, Stellantis developed a medium-power architecture solution for the above conditions, which can provide a cruising range of more than 400 km in just three minutes, almost the same time as refueling. The hydrogen fuel cell is positioned as the power required for long-distance continuous driving. The peak power is provided by the use of plug-in hybrid lithium batteries. Charging from an external power source can provide an additional 50KM of pure battery cruising range.
It is not just Stellantis that recognizes the hydrogenation of light commercial vehicles in Europe. The German Schaeffler Group also displayed a light commercial vehicle developed in cooperation with REFIRE, a commercial hydrogen fuel cell technology supplier, at the IAA exhibition in 2022.

Toyota Extends Hydrogen Car Lineup Overseas
Toyota, the first to mass-produce hydrogen vehicles, has launched two generations of its representative Mirai, with sales far below expectations, making many media pessimistic about the future development of hydrogen vehicles. Nevertheless, the high maturity of the second-generation Mirai technology has gradually laid the foundation for expanding the product line, and the governments of major countries in the world have attached great importance to the application of hydrogen energy, giving Toyota a chance to show its talents. In addition to gradually pushing the Mirai market overseas, it has also gradually extended its technical capabilities to other car series.
At the beginning of December 2022, Toyota Motor announced that its Advanced Propulsion Center (APC) has received funding from the British government to develop a prototype hydrogen vehicle version of the Hilux pickup. The vehicle will utilize components from Mirai's second-generation fuel cell system, which will be used to develop the fuel cell system in collaboration with UK high-tech engineering partners Ricardo, ETL, D2H, and Thatcham Research. The purpose of this move is to assist the British corporate team to develop relevant expertise and look forward to achieving the goal of self-sufficiency in the next generation of hydrogen powertrain technology. The plan is set as the development of prototype vehicles, which will start in 2023 for a period of two years, but the possibility of limited production has not been ruled out, which may become the first overseas production of Toyota hydrogen vehicles.
In addition, it is also cooperating with Kenworth, an old American truck manufacturer, to replace the diesel engine of the T680 model with Toyota's six hydrogen fuel cell systems, which will be put into production in 2023.

Honda Motor's Return to the Hydrogen Vehicle Market in 2024 is of Great Market Significance
Compared with car manufacturers who are keen on the hydrogenation of heavy vehicles, the price-sensitive passenger cars have been limited to the dilemma of only two car manufacturers, Toyota and Hyundai. However, there is a lot of progress in 2022. In addition to BMW, representing Europe, deciding to start small-scale production, Honda, which was originally mass-produced but suspended, decided to launch the best-selling car model CR-V in the United States in 2024. A hydrogen car version with plug-in functions. Honda launched the first commercial hydrogen vehicle FCX as early as 2002 and resumed sales of Clarity passenger vehicles in 2016. Due to the low market acceptance, the cumulative global sales within 4 years were only about 1,900 units, so it announced the discontinuation of production in 2020. The company has a strong foundation in hydrogen energy vehicles and has verified the reliability and feasibility of hydrogen energy vehicles very early. In 2003, hydrogen vehicles were started and operated at sub-freezing temperatures, long before other automakers such as Toyota. Therefore, it is not surprising to decide to return to the market of passenger cars, but it has deep significance in market strategy. The introduction of plug-in hydrogen energy vehicles is to focus on the lack of battery life of current lithium vehicles. The market has fully reflected that hydrogen vehicles are the real trend that must be followed. Furthermore, for areas with hydrogen refueling infrastructure, hydrogen vehicles can provide the convenience of driving outside that car users who are accustomed to traditional car models are familiar with. At the same time, it is also a necessary means for the company to achieve the goal of fully electrifying the entire vehicle range by 2040.
Like BMW, Honda will start with a small production run at its performance manufacturing center in Ohio, known for its low-volume specialty vehicles such as the Acura NSX supercar. As for the relevant technical details of the car, it will be announced in 2024.
Like Honda, Renault, which is eyeing mass production of hydrogen-powered passenger cars in 2024, plans to launch a new hydrogen-electric hybrid Scenic Vision model. Renault is also developing a new architecture for alternative power systems such as batteries, motors, fuel cells, and hydrogen tanks for hydrogen vehicles, which is currently in the prototype design stage.

  • INSIDEEVs, 2021-05-20, Mark Kane, VW's Herbert Diess Says To Ditch Hydrogen Cars, Focus On BEVs
  • Business Insider, 2022-02-19, Elias Holdenried, Volkswagen arbeitet weiter an der Brennstoffzelle — das beweist ein still und leise veröffentlichtes Patent
  • Porsche Newsroom, 2022-08-18, Mastering the Nordschleife with hydrogen
  • Hydrogen Fuel News, 2022-10-27, Julie Campbell, Why BMW Chair Oliver Zipse says hydrogen cars will be the “hippest thing” on the road
  • Electrive, 2022-10-21, Chris Randall, Is Hyundai pulling out of hydrogen project in Switzerland?
  • Toyota UK Magazine, 2022-12-9, Jake Weaver, Hydrogen Corolla Cross begins testing in Japan
  • Honda Media Newsroom, 2022-11-30, Honda To Begin U.S. Production of Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles in 2024
  •  Mobility Outlook, T Murrali,2022-10-30, Stellantis Takes Next Step In Commercializing Hydrogen Fuel Cell
  • V3Cars, 2022-12-25, Amit Saraswat, Tata Motors Likely To Showcase Hydrogen Fuel Cell Concept At The Auto Expo 2023
  • FCHEA, 2022-07-25, Nova Thayer, Hydrogen in the Mining Industry
  • H2Accelerate, 2022-09-05, Hydrogen trucking could be competitive with diesel as early as 2030, given the right policy support, according to a new whitepaper from the H2Accelerate collaboration



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