Swedish auto manufacturer Volvo has made a major leap with the announcement of customer trials for hydrogen-powered internal combustion engine (HICE) trucks in 2026. A wider market launch is planned for later this decade.

These trucks utilize High Pressure Direct Injection (HPDI) technology. A small amount of ignition fuel, potentially renewable hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO), is used to start the engine before switching to hydrogen. According to Volvo, this approach achieves net-zero CO2 emissions well-to-wheel, making them classifiable as zero-emission vehicles under EU regulations. However, the company acknowledges minimal emissions of nitrogen oxides and particles.

“These HICE trucks will offer the same performance and reliability as our diesel trucks, but with the significant benefit of near-zero CO2 emissions,” said a Volvo spokesperson. “They will complement our existing battery-electric trucks, already available for several years.”

Volvo sees advantages to HICE trucks, particularly for applications requiring high sustained power output and operation in hot climates. While hydrogen fuel cell electric trucks offer even lower fuel consumption and truly zero emissions, challenges remain with cooling systems in hot climates and overall vehicle complexity.

The HICE trucks are expected to carry a premium price tag compared to diesel models. Ultimately, the total cost of ownership will depend on government incentives and hydrogen fuel prices.

Volvo’s commitment to hydrogen continues beyond HICE trucks. The company is also developing hydrogen fuel cell electric trucks, with public road testing completed last year and a commercial launch planned for the latter half of this decade.

This two-pronged approach – HICE and fuel cell technology – positions Volvo as a leader in the race towards sustainable long-haul trucking solutions.

GAIL Pioneers Green Hydrogen Production in India

Indian PSU major GAIL (India) Ltd commissioned its first green hydrogen plant in Vijaipur, Madhya Pradesh under the National Green Hydrogen Mission, a government initiative aiming to establish India as a leader in the hydrogen economy.

The new plant utilizes a 10-megawatt Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) electrolyzer powered by renewable energy to produce 4.3 tonnes of green hydrogen daily. This ultra-pure hydrogen (99.999% by volume) boasts a pressure of 30 Kg/cm2, making it suitable for various industrial applications.

Initially, the green hydrogen will be used internally at GAIL’s Vijaipur facility, blended with natural gas for their existing processes and equipment. GAIL also aims to distribute this clean fuel to retail customers in nearby areas through high-pressure transportation systems.

To ensure a sustainable source of power for the electrolyzer, GAIL is procuring renewable energy through open access and establishing a dedicated 20 MW solar power plant (including both ground-mounted and floating solar panels) at the Vijaipur facility.

The National Green Hydrogen Mission, launched by the Indian government, aims to achieve an annual green hydrogen production capacity of 5 million tonnes by 2030.

India has already made significant progress towards this goal. The government has awarded tenders for incentives to support green hydrogen production of over 412,000 tonnes per year. Tenders have been issued to establish a domestic electrolyzer manufacturing capacity of 1,500 MW per annum.

Read More

India Revs Up Green Hydrogen Integration for 24/7 Power Security