Traditional heavy duty transport vehicles such as waste collection lorries run on diesel. Oxidation of that diesel in internal combustion engines produces about one quarter of the CO2 emissions from all road transport, corresponding to five per cent of the EU’s total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Moreover, a significant part of the particulate matter found in the air is generated by diesel engines. Very small particle air pollution can have serious acute and chronic health effects, which are exacerbated by NOx and CO emissions as well as the combustion output of diesel engines. Heavy duty vehicles, especially garbage trucks, tend to produce high noise levels, which are especially disturbing in densely populated areas. Hydrogen as an energy vector in mobile applications may provide a suitable response to these issues. When used in a fuel cell, electricity is generated, which can power a clean and quiet powertrain/driveline.
The overall objective of LIFE’N GRAB HY! is to demonstrate two hydrogen-electric hybrid garbage trucks as a zero-emission and low-noise alternative for waste collection in 10 different sites. The project will also create public awareness of hydrogen energy as a sustainable energy carrier. The project will be carried out in the following stages:
- Phase 1 Under this initial phase, two 26- tonne hydrogen electric hybrid garbage collectors will be manufactured. These will combine a silent garbage press with a hydrogen- electric hybrid driveline for traction and energy delivery;
- Phase 2 Following on from this, a large- scale demonstration action will be organised in three phases: (i) The trucks will be tested under real life circumstances in two different case studies for a year. This will include a purely urban environment characterised by very short drives and intensive use of the garbage press, and a second case study in a rural collection area with long drives at higher speeds and less intensive use of the garbage press; (ii) Both demonstrator trucks will be put into operations in three other sites in Antwerp, Rotterdam and Cologne. Each of these demonstrations will include at least two weeks of full operations on the spot, preceded by a series of communication actions to disseminate the results of the tests; and (iii) The actions of the project’s demonstration phase will be re-organised in 10 new hydrogen centres in France, Germany and eventually in Scandinavia.
- Phase 3 - The experiences gathered during the project will be summarised in a book to be presented at a conference that will highlight the project achievements.This is intended as a guide to the deployment of hydrogen electric hybrid technology in garbage collection, including links with other relevant heavy duty applications. It will include the calculated environmental impact of this technology, best practices and lessons learned.
LIFE’N GRAB HY! expects to produce the following results:
- Two hydrogen electric hybrid garbage collectors will be manufactured and fully operational for at least three years. The targeted daily energy use is 6-8 kg hydrogen/day for a full working day; Over a three-year period, energy savings of 250MWh will be achieved, along with preventing the production of 125 t of CO2, 1 075 kg of CO, 2.5 t of NOx and 51 kg particulate matter;
- The two demonstration trucks will be introduced and operated in ten different cities. These experiences will lead to ten detailed deployment plans describing how the particular waste company can achieve the targets and objectives of the Transport White Paper concerning waste collection through the use of the demonstrated hydrogen electric technology; and an overall plan will outline and summaries the project experiences including recommendations on how the energy reduction, pollution and noise minimisation targets can be reached for the waste collection sector in Western Europe.
“The Life 'N Grab Hy! activities have received funding from the European Union’s Life Programme under the Grant Agreement nr. LIFE14 ENV/BE/000415”