French utility Engie and global mining company Anglo American are collaborating to develop and fuel a hydrogen-powered mining haul truck, which they say will be the world’s largest.
The mining sector operates in challenging conditions and represents a high portion of the global energy consumption. Jointly developing the hydrogen-powered truck is the first step to achieving both companies’ common ambition to decarbonise the mining sector, one of the key sectors in the energy transition.
According to Engie, this collaboration between the two companies marks the first time a truck of this size and load capacity (300 metric tonnes) will be converted to run on hydrogen. Engie will provide the hydrogen generation solutions while Anglo American will develop the truck.
The modifications to the existing truck include replacing the diesel tank with hydrogen tanks and replacing the engine with hydrogen fuel cells and a battery pack. The hydrogen will be provided by the solar power generation capacity at the mining site.
First motion of the hydrogen-powered truck is expected in 2020, followed by a testing and validation program at Anglo American’s Mogalakwena Platinum Group Metals mine in South Africa, after which additional trucks are expected to be rolled out at other Anglo American operations.
The agreement was signed onboard Energy Observer during its London stopover. The world’s first hydrogen-powered vessel travelling around the world demonstrates a full decarbonisation solution that Engie is developing on an industrial scale.
“We are delighted to join forces with Anglo American to design the first solution that aims to decarbonise heavy-duty mobility in the mining sector,” said Michèle Azalbert, CEO of Engie’s Hydrogen Business Unit. “This is part of Engie’s strategy to develop industrial-scale hydrogen-based solutions to help our energy-intensive customers in their journey to carbon neutrality.”
Tony O’Neill, Technical Director of Anglo American, added, “We are extremely pleased to be partnering with Engie, and we look forward to developing and implementing this step- change technology.”