“The eight largest car manufacturers invest extensively in hydrogen-based fuel-cell vehicles, where the electricity is produced in fuel cells. We are convinced that environmentally friendly production of hydrogen from renewable electricity is the start of a rapidly growing market for zero-emission cars,” says Roger Andersson, business developer AGA Gas AB, Clean Energy division.
Vehicles but no infrastructure
Hyundai, Toyota and Honda already have fuel cell cars. A number of other car manufacturers are in the process of developing energy efficient, fuel cell-powered zero-emission cars. Toyota and Volkswagen recently announced the introduction of a series-produced fuel cell vehicle in Europe. Nissan also has a commercial fuel cell vehicle in its pipeline.
Fuel cell-driven vehicles require hydrogen filling stations spread out at suitable distances within Europe. In Sweden, the infrastructure for hydrogen is not yet developed. There is only one hydrogen filling station located in Malmo serving a few Hyundai vehicles.
Trials are currently ongoing to test mobile hydrogen fueling stations. Company Sandvik and the Sandviken municipality are testing a specially designed flatbed truck filling solution developed by AGA Linde for cars and forklifts. The mobile filling station handles 350 bar pressures for the forklift and 700 bar for cars.
There is a burgeoning interest in hydrogen within the EU. AGA is participating in the EU project HIT-2 (Hydrogen Infrastructure for Transport) that aims to develop two HIT-2 strategic corridors within Europe. One will include filling stations in Stockholm (Arlanda), Gothenburg and Voikoski, Finland.
Sweden’s largest fuel cell filling station
“We expect the hydrogen refueling station at Arlanda airport to be operational by September 2015 with capacity of 180, 700 bar, fill-ups per day with a range of 500 kilometers. The only exhaust from these cars is water vapor,” says Andersson.
“We have developed over 100 hydrogen filling stations in the past 15 years but this will be Sweden’s largest. We see great potential. It is a positive sign that leading car companies are beginning serial production of such vehicles. Such cars typically have a lower cost than the pilot series. This can contribute to a commercial breakthrough for fuel cells in vehicles,” concludes Andersson.
AGA currently operates a filling station at Arlanda airport. It has five pumps for ordinary cars and one specially designed for buses. The station has a capacity of 60-80 vehicles per hour. The new filling station for fuel cell vehicles will be a supplement to the traditional systems. The hydrogen comes from AGA’s plant in Sandviken where water is broken down into hydrogen and oxygen with green electricity in a reverse fuel cell.
This article was published in March 2015