© Nikola
© Nikola

Nikola opens first HYLA hydrogen refuelling unit in California

Nikola Corporation has opened its first hydrogen refuelling unit in southern California, through its HYLA brand.

Located at 2445 East Guasti Road in Ontario, California, it will provide fuel to Class 8 trucks and be capable of fuelling up to 40 Nikola vehicles.

The station is part of a wider plan to establish up to 60 hydrogen refuelling solutions, with nine anticipated to be in place by the end of Q2 2024.

Nikola is expected to provide round-the-clock support with on-site HYLA Ambassadors and Operation Technicians.

Nikola’s President of Energy, Ole Hoefelmann, claimed it’s the company’s objective to prioritise access to a hydrogen solution network.

Hoefelmann added, “Once the nine planned solutions are in place by mid-2024, Nikola will have established one of the world’s largest heavy-duty hydrogen refuelling networks, providing customers accessibility at their current locations and along their planned routes.”

The HYLA refuelling solutions will be available to both Nikola vehicles and other Class 8 customers with flexible refueling options, including modular and permanent HYLA stations, customer-owned facilities, and partnerships with public truck stops.

The company established a 10-year agreement in December (2023) with FirstElement Fuel, to refuel Nikola’s hydrogen vehicles at its California station. This station will be part of Nikola’s hydrogen refuelling network.

Read more: Nikola and FirstElement Fuel collaborate on hydrogen truck refuelling

Throughout 2023, Nikola ensured 35 of its 42 Class 8 hydrogen vehicles produced were wholesaled to US and Canadian customers.

Three of the seven trucks produced but not wholesaled are being used in an extended field test with a fleet partner, whilst two are in continued validation and engineering and the other two are being used for service training and customer demonstrations.

Read more:Nikola delivers almost all of its produced hydrogen-powered trucks to customers in 2023


Permitting issues for hydrogen refuelling in California, US

The most common question we hear from customers interested in building a hydrogen refuelling station in California is, “Why does it cost so much to build a site, and why does it take so long?”

As federal, state, and local governments move toward alternative energy solutions to decarbonise and battle climate change, building the necessary infrastructure to support these goals is paramount. However, it’s not without its obstacles.

As a provider of hydrogen refuelling infrastructure solutions, offering complete end-to-end services in the hydrogen fuel marketplace, FASTECH is experiencing many of legislative stumbling blocks that are seemingly delaying the deployment of hydrogen refuelling infrastructure, and thus the use of hydrogen-powered vehicles in California.

Whether it is building a new hydrogen refuelling station from the ground up, or adding hydrogen dispensers to an existing station, challenges face both contractors and operators across California.

Read more here.

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