A public road approved prototype of the Mercedes-Benz GenH2 Truck completed Daimler Truck’s #HydrogenRecordRun covering 1,047 km of distance driven with one fill of liquid hydrogen.
Powered by a cellcentric fuel-cell system and equipped with a liquid hydrogen fuel tank system, the run started 25 September in the afternoon at Mercedes-Benz Truck’s Customer Center in Woerth am Rhein and finished on 26 September in Berlin. The truck completed the run fully loaded and a gross combined vehicle weight of 40 tons under real-life conditions, without emitting any CO2 during the complete run. The record drive with sealed tanks and controlled mileage was independently confirmed by an inspection document from TÜV Rheinland.
After the successful record run, Andreas Gorbach, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler Truck AG, Head of Truck Technology, drove the truck across the finish line in the Ministergarten in Berlin.
Ahead of the run, the Mercedes-Benz GenH2 Truck was fueled with liquid hydrogen at Daimler Truck’s filling station at the company’s development and testing center in Woerth. The hydrogen supplied by Air Liquide is of renewable origin, as it has been produced from biomethane with guarantees of origin.
During the refueling process, cryogenic liquid hydrogen at -253 ˚C was filled into two 40 kg tanks mounted on either side of the truck chassis. Due to the particularly good insulation of the vehicle tanks, the hydrogen can be kept at temperature for a sufficiently long time without active cooling. Both tanks were sealed before the start of the #HydrogenRecordRun by TÜV Rheinland.
Daimler Truck prefers liquid hydrogen in the development of hydrogen-based drives. In this state the energy carrier has a significantly higher energy density in relation to volume compared to gaseous hydrogen. As a result, more hydrogen can be carried, which significantly increases the range and enables comparable performance of the vehicle with that of a conventional diesel truck.
As one of the world’s largest commercial vehicle manufacturers, Daimler Truck has committed itself to the Paris Climate Agreement. The objective is to offer new vehicles that are CO2-neutral in driving operation in global core markets (Europe, USA, Japan) by 2039.
Battery-electric trucks are the ideal choice for distribution haulage as well as for long-distance haulage with regular deployment on plannable routes with suitable distances and charging options. However, hydrogen-based drives could be a better solution, especially for very flexible and particularly demanding deployments in heavy-duty transport and long-distance haulage.
In addition, the availability of appropriate infrastructure and sufficient green electricity are crucial for a successful transition to emission-free technologies. Daimler Truck is convinced that rapid and cost-optimized coverage of this energy demand can only be achieved with both technologies.
Three years ago, on 16th September 2020, Daimler Truck announced in Berlin the commitment to invest in hydrogen technology on a grand scale. CEO Martin Daum presented the Mercedes-Benz GenH2 Truck Concept for the first time to the public to underline the company’s technology strategy. This was followed up by establishing cellcentric, a joint venture with Volvo Group, which will put one of Europe’s largest production facilities for fuel-cells in operation.
Since 2021, first prototypes of the Mercedes-Benz GenH2 Truck are undergoing rigorous testing and have most recently demonstrated their capabilities at the Brenner Pass, one of Europe’s busiest and most challenging transit routes. The successful #HydrogenRecordRun now marks a further milestone on the road to sustainable transportation.
First fuel-cell trucks are expected to be tested in customer hands in the coming years, while the goal remains firmly set to introduce the series version of the Mercedes-Benz GenH2 Truck in the second half of the decade.