Hyfindr Tech Talk # 22 – Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle or Battery Electric Vehicle – Hydrogen Technology Explained

Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle or Battery Electric Vehicle

In this tech talk, Steven had the pleasure of discussing about the environmental and resource perspective of fuel cell and battery electric vehicles in the heavy-duty sector with Sean Mackinnon, Chief Scientist at Loop Energy.

Learn about hydrogen fuel cell vehicle and battery electric vehicle

Steven Oji discusses with Sean Mackinnon about the environmental perspective of fuel cell vehicles versus battery electric vehicles, specifically as it applies to trucks and similar heavy-duty commercial applications. They aim to explore the efficiency and impact of these technologies. Historically, comparisons between batteries and fuel cells have focused on factors like total cost of ownership, range, and fueling infrastructure. But have we looked at how we should best use the world’s limited lithium resources? What is the fastest and most efficient pathway to decarbonization?

The discussion further focuses on how heavy-duty trucks contribute significantly to transportation emissions and replacing them with zero-emission alternatives is crucial. Battery electric trucks typically require large battery packs, around 1500 kWh, due to their energy requirements. On the other hand, fuel cell range extender systems, which have smaller battery packs (150 kWh), can recharge batteries on the go using hydrogen fuel cells. This combination approach significantly reduces the size of the battery needed per vehicle.

By using fuel cells as range extenders, the same 1500 kWh battery pack can be distributed across 10 trucks, resulting in 10 times faster CO2 abatement compared to purely battery electric trucks. This approach optimizes the use of lithium-ion battery resources.

The conversation highlights the abundance of solar energy and the importance of optimizing the efficient use of battery resources, which are constrained compared to sunlight. They argue that in heavy-duty applications, range extenders offer a more efficient and scalable solution for achieving rapid CO2 abatement as well as technology adoption. By utilizing hydrogen fuel cells as range extenders, heavy-duty vehicles can operate with smaller battery packs which allow us to reduce and spread the world’s lithium-ion resource requirements.

In conclusion, the discussion emphasizes the need to balance efficiency, resource availability, and emission reduction when considering the adoption of fuel cell and battery electric technologies in the heavy-duty sector. The focus is on finding the most effective and sustainable approach to accelerate the transition to zero-emission transportation.

Visit Hyfindr on Youtube

Watch more high-quality videos, such as Hyfindr Tech Talks and more …

If you like the video, please also subscribe to our new Hyfindr Youtube Channel. We launched Hyfindr Tech Talks in January – a new format that is specifically designed for engineers who are interesed in the hydrogen economy!

Steven is a fuel cell system designer and he will deep-dive into the technology that makes the hydrogen economy work with real experts. We hope you will like the new format.

Scroll to Top