Innovative hydrogen-powered vehicle manufacturer HVS (Hydrogen Vehicle Systems) has unveiled its modular platform for heavy-duty vehicles that provides a hydrogen fuel cell powertrain with medium and high-power e-axles, up to three hydrogen tanks and two power outputs.
The company’s tractor unit will be available with two different types of e-axle – one medium power and one high power – and with up to three hydrogen tanks, depending on the customer’s range requirements. In addition, the hydrogen fuel cell powertrain can be specified with two different power outputs depending on the customer’s payload and mission requirements.
HVS for hydrogen trucks: flexible platform with high driver comfort
According to the UK-based compeny, HVS’ ground-up designed vehicles have been specifically developed to maximise driver comfort while the platform is purpose built around the hydrogen powertrain. The vehicle’s design includes a suspended cab at the front and a fixed tower at the rear, housing the thermal and powertrain systems. This platform format breaks with the industry-standard tradition of variable cab types and sizes – such as big, medium and small, and high/low-roof – and means that even the smallest variants have the same spacious cab as the largest models.
HVS’ approach is to ensure that it supplies vehicles in the most appropriate form for the job requirement. The modular platform’s flexibility is such that the trucks can easily be retrofitted with alternative modules such as additional hydrogen tanks if the fleet’s duties change or expand. This has the effect of minimising the total cost of ownership (TCO) and provides a compelling business case for early switching to CO2-free vehicles.
Zero-emission range of up to 600 km
In fact, HVS is developing new hydrogen drivetrains for its future vehicles, with a focus on delivering maximum power and range for each operational duty class. With this modular platform HVS offers the best available technology meaning that its 4×2 tractor unit provides a highly competitive, zero-emission range of up to 600 km.
“We’re offering maximum modularity within a single base vehicle platform, and we would never have been able to achieve this level of flexibility and optimisation with a diesel-powertrain derived vehicle design”, said Pete Clarke, Head of Design at HVS. “Our vehicles have been created for a fundamentally different technology within an all-new package, so every cubic millimetre has been designed afresh. We initially calculated the maximum wheelbase possible to achieve the required turning circle and manoeuvrability for the target market. The design process then began with the optimal powertrain format, around which the vehicle design was then created – ensuring that form followed function. Rather than playing with a configurator, HVS can put the best value package together for customers based on information about what they do, the loads they will carry, along with their ranges and routes”.