Global shipping and logistics service company UPS will trial four newly developed hydrogen fuel cell-powered delivery vans in California later this year.
The news is a result of a newly-formed partnership between Linamar Corporation, Roush CleanTech and Ballard Power Systems, all of which have joined forces to deliver the vehicles by April 2021.
Under the agreement, Roush will supply the overall vehicle and system design, integration, build and commissioning for the vans. Ballard will supply the fuel cell power technology, designed to integrate with the eAxle and battery systems in the Ford F059 chassis,
Building upon the success of an earlier Department of Energy (DOE) programme for a Class 6 hybrid electric vehicles (HEV) delivery vehicles, Linamar will supply its new Gen 2.0 eAxle that utilises a robust beam axle design with low NVH helical gears, levering Linamar’s gear manufacturing expertise, and an integrated electric park lock.
Once complete, the hydrogen-powered vehicle will have a range of approximately 150 miles, based on targeted driving cycles.
Such effort is all part of the Center of Transportation and the Environment’s (CTE’s) Next Generation Fuel Cell Delivery Van Deployment Project, a project which it is managing for the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
The CARB Project includes developing, validating and deploying four fuel cell hybrid electric delivery vans as part of California Climate Investments, a state-wide initiative works to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, strengthen the economy, and improve public health and the environment.
Commenting on the effort, Dan Raudebaugh, Executive Director of CTE, said, “The strength of CTE’s project lies in its team member experience with advanced vehicle manufacturing, utilisation of proven, off-the-shelf components, participation of UPS as the fleet operator and deployment partner, and the propulsion system’s commercialisation potential.”
Randy MacEwen, Ballard President and CEO, added, “Ballard’s industry-leading experience in the manufacture of fuel cell systems for medium and heavy-duty motive applications includes powering fuel cell electric vehicles for more than 75 million kilometers to date.”
“Our high-performance fuel cell systems are designed to meet the demanding needs of commercial vehicles, including superior durability requirements for delivery vans. We are proud to be working with Linamar, Roush and CTE on this ground-breaking project for CARB.”
Todd Mouw, President of ROUSH CleanTech, added, “Roush’s expertise in clean mobility solutions is supported by decades of engineering, vehicle controls and integration experience with many of the major OEMs. Combine that with the fact that we have deployed more than 37,000 Ford medium-duty trucks and Blue Bird school buses featuring advanced technologies, such as propane autogas, and it provides fleets a comfort level in transitioning away from traditional fuels like diesel.”
“Our customers have accumulated well over 1 billion road miles, so we understand how to engineer, sell, service and support our customers through the complete asset lifecycle.”