Industrial gas company Air Products, headquartered in Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania, USA, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Cummins Inc., Columbus, Indiana, USA, to collaborate on accelerating the integration of hydrogen fuel cell trucks in the Americas, Europe and Asia.
Under the collaboration, Cummins will provide hydrogen fuel cell electric powertrains integrated into selected OEM partners’ heavy-duty trucks for Air Products, as Air Products begins the process of converting its global fleet of distribution vehicles to hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.
Following a successful demonstration and pilot phase, Air Products plans to convert its global fleet of approximately 2,000 trucks to hydrogen fuel cell zero-emission vehicles. The companies expect the demonstration phase to begin in 2022. They will also work together to increase the accessibility of renewable hydrogen, including hydrogen infrastructure opportunities that promote the adoption of hydrogen for mobility.
“We believe hydrogen is the future for heavy duty segments of the transportation market and we can demonstrate to the world its merits by being a first-mover in transitioning our heavy-duty fleet of trucks to hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles,” stated Seifi Ghasemi, Air Products’ chairman, president and CEO. “We are pleased to be working with Cummins to achieve our fleet transition goals. Sustainability is Air Products’ growth strategy and creates our growth opportunities, and nothing says more about our company’s approach to sustainability than a fleet of zero-emission vehicles on the road delivering product to customers every day.”
Tom Linebarger, chairman and CEO at Cummins commented, “This is another turning point for hydrogen and the energy transition. As we develop the technologies of tomorrow, we need the partnership of others to be successful, and this partnership with Air Products is the next step in leading the industry on the path to a zero-emissions future.”
The companies explain that hydrogen is an important technology option for sustainable transportation, including for heavy-duty vehicles. Hydrogen fuel cells are gaining momentum as the technology of choice in heavy-duty applications due to the duty-cycles, especially in extreme climate conditions.
Eric Guter, Air Products’ vice president for hydrogen for mobility solutions stated, “The best way to promote the adoption of hydrogen for mobility in heavy-duty applications is for us to have units on the road and lead by example. In addition to other heavy-duty applications like transit fleets, where we already provide fuelling solutions, the semi-truck market is a major opportunity for hydrogen due to its rigorous requirements. Only hydrogen fuel cell vehicles can provide the necessary range, refuelling time, and weight requirements to decarbonise this important transportation sector.”
Amy Davis, vice president and president of New Power at Cummins added, “We are thrilled to work with Air Products to take this important step towards transitioning thousands of their trucks to zero-emissions, hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles. Together with Air Products, we will combine our vast expertise in hydrogen – from production to consumption – with the on-road learnings we already have through our Cummins-powered zero-emissions fleet. From the hundreds of battery electric buses and trucks to fuel cell systems for bus and rail, working with these innovative fleets creates the tipping point necessary for us to scale and accelerate a carbon-neutral world.”