An industry-led, $15m project will take place to test the ability of hydrogen to fuel Alberta’s freight transportation sector.

Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA) is contributing more than $7.3m to the Albert Zero-Emissions Truck Electrification Collaboration (AZETEC) project, led by the Alberta Motor Transport Association.

ERA is providing the funding through its competitive BEST Challenge programme, which targets technologies that demonstrate potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Alberta and secure the provinces success in a low-carbon economy.

The three-year project is scheduled to run until mid-2022 and involves the designing and manufacturing of two heavy duty, extended-range hydrogen fuel cell electric hybrid trucks. The trucks will move freight year-around between Edmonton and Calgary.

The 64 tonne, B-train tractor-trailers are capable of travelling up to 700 kilometres between refuelling and will be the first vehicles of this size and capacity built and tested globally.

The AZETEC project builds on more than a year’s worth of research, data analysis and scenario modelling carried out by the Canadian Energy Systems Analysis Research (CESAR) Initiative, examining various low or zero-carbon energy systems and the economic opportunity for hydrogen in Alberta.

CESAR collaborated with the freight transportation sector, technology providers and other stakeholders in developing, defining and submitting the project proposal to ERA.

The AZETEC project will be managed by Zen Clean Energy Solutions, a Vancouver-based consultancy with experience in designing and managing hydrogen fuel cell electric projects.

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