Plug Power Inc., has signed a cooperative memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Zhangjiagang Furui Special Equipment Co., LTD (Furui), along with a leading Chinese industrial vehicle manufacturer—also identified as one of the “big three” Chinese automakers—to develop new fuel cell applications and fueling solutions to be utilized in the large and expanding industrial electric vehicle market in China.
Under the terms of the agreement, the three companies will collaborate to build electric vehicles equipped with Plug Power designed hybrid fuel cell engine systems and hydrogen fueling station solutions. Plug Power and its partners will form a fuel cell vehicle development project team and utilize their financial and research and development resources for a large-scale demonstration project.
Near-term deliverables for the program include two industrial delivery truck prototypes, both using Plug Power’s ProGen fuel cell engines, by March, 2017, with a short term projection for more than 500 vehicles and a fueling station network to be deployed in the Shanxi province over the following year.
Based on the acceptance of the first 500 units, the program goal is to deploy 13,500 commercial fuel cell vehicles over three years with a widespread fueling station network.
China has made hydrogen and fuel cell vehicles a key component of the country’s Energy Revolution Program, which includes over $100 billion in investment and runs through 2030. As a result, China is projected be the largest mobile fuel cell market in the world within the next two to three years. Developing a widespread hydrogen fueling system across China is critical for successful continuation of the country’s adoption of green-vehicle technology.—Andy Marsh, Plug Power’s CEO
Furui, a leader in China’s development of the compressed and liquefied natural gas industry has developed, deployed, and operates LNG refueling stations throughout China. Furui began to pioneer LNG applications for fleet vehicles such as buses, medium duty trucks and delivery vans in 2004. Today, a well-developed and extensive refueling infrastructure is in place with more than 2000 LNG fueling stations deployed in the China market. Furui will capitalize on this proven success and industry knowledge to support the development and deployment of commercial and consumer hydrogen fueling infrastructure.
The Chinese vehicle manufacturer is a leader in developing commercial and industrial vehicles. Their extensive experience spans different size and application types, and includes both traditional gas and diesel powered vehicles, along with numerous battery electric vehicle platforms. Their leadership in the electrical vehicle space includes passenger cars and fleet vehicles such as buses, delivery trucks, and construction vehicles.