A scheme in Sheffield, UK, which aims to upgrade the city’s roads, pavements, street lighting and bridging, is using some of the first hydrogen (H2)-powered vehicles in the country to help improve its environmental performance.

Working with Sheffield City Council, the Streets Ahead contract is a huge city-wide 25-year highway maintenance project that will see Sheffield’s roads transformed from some of the worst in the country to the best.

Amey, who is steering the contract, is trialling two vans that use a H2 fuel cell and will monitor the results along with the Department for Transport to access the use of H2-powered vehicles in general.

“We will run a trial with two H2 vehicles over the next two years,” said Streets Ahead Environment Manager, Tom Cullingford. “At the moment, there are only 20 to 30 H2 vehicles in the country and technology is at a very early stage. But, the obvious benefit is that there are zero carbon emissions which will help improve the air quality in and around Sheffield.”

H2 for the vehicles will be provided by ITM Power from their H2 station based at Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) in Sheffield – one of only a handful of H2 refueling stations outside of London.

It is hoped that H2-powered vehicles could play a part in helping Sheffield to reduce levels of nitrous oxides and particulates as part of the city’s commitment to an Air Quality Management Zone.

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Source: Sheffield City Council