Zero-emission, hydrogen-powered commercial vehicle innovator, Hydrogen Vehicle Systems (HVS), has received a £15 million grant from the UK Government’s Advanced Propulsion Centre.
The grant to APC is part of a wider funding package to support zero emission transport and follows a successful entry into the competition for developing automotive technologies and growing capability towards net zero.
The purpose of APC’s funding is to support the UK’s long-term capabilities by securing long-term R&D investment in collaborative, pre-production research and development (R&D) projects. The funding will support 50% of the project’s approximate £30 million total cost, the company said. The APC-funded projects will contribute to the ambition to decarbonise the automotive sector as described in the UK’s Hydrogen Strategy.
The project, which will run between September 2022 and June 2025, comprises a consortium led by HVS and includes Grayson (Thermal Systems), Fusion Processing (vehicle vision systems) and PNDC (a commercial arm of Strathclyde University specialising in power electronics). The support and combination of this expertise will expedite the development of the full vehicle’s fuel cell and battery hybrid powertrain, covering engineering, testing and development.
Earlier in November, HVS revealed its hydrogen powertrain in the form of a 5.5-tonne technology demonstrator, previewing its planned 40-tonne zero-emission HGV (Heavy Goods Vehicle), fulfilling the company’s objective of being the first indigenous UK designed and developed hydrogen-electric HGV on the market.
“Supporting vital research and development in the UK, now more than ever, provides an opportunity to invest in transport decarbonisation as well as boost growth in the automotive sector,” said Ian Constance, Chief Executive at the APC.
Founded in 2017, HVS focuses on the ground-up design and development of zero-emission hydrogen-powered commercial vehicles. The company comprises industry specialists, with vast experience in the automotive, energy, hydrogen technology, power electronics, sustainability, and environmental management fields.
The government set a target to curtail sales of all non-zero emission 3.5-26-ton HGVs by 2035 or earlier and all sales of new non-zero emission HGVs by 2040. The company said its HGV technology can play a crucial role in enabling these emissions reduction targets.
Besides the government funding, HVS’ strategic investment partner is the service station and grocery corporation, EG Group, offering hydrogen refuelling infrastructure, fleet customer base and the potential for global scalability.
Announcing the APC funding, Business Secretary Grant Shapps said: “Seizing the potential from new technologies will be a key part of its future success, while also making our roads cleaner, greener and more affordable.”
HVS CEO Jawad Khursheed said: “We have successfully produced our first driving fuel cell technology demonstrator vehicle and are on track to deliver the UK’s first-to-market hydrogen fuel cell-powered HGV. We have experienced rapid growth at HVS in as little as a year, now with this government support we will boost innovation, create thousands of UK-based jobs in the supply chain, and build upon our goal towards cleaner HGVs.”