Energy Blog: Hydrogen Could be Sweet for Heavy-Duty Trucks

Ultimately, researchers are working to match the time it takes a trucker to fuel a diesel truck, about 10 minutes. According to NREL, that requires an average hydrogen gas mass flow rate of 10 kilograms per minute, and 20 kg per minute peak, based on a maximum vehicle storage potential of 100 kg hydrogen gas. Such a rate is some 10 times the average mass flow rate now used for light-duty fuel cell EVs.

In April, researchers exceeded the goal, accomplishing an average mass flow rate of 14 kg per minute with a fill of 40.3 kg into a bank of 8 storage tanks in 2.87 minutes. Ultimately the researchers are working to fill 60 kg to 80 kg in under 10 minutes…

In the shorter term, industry executives see the sweet spot for hydrogen in long-range, heavy-duty trucks. Those using lithium-ion batteries would take two hours or more to charge. Hydrogen, especially with the work being done at NREL, looks like a faster way to stay on the road.