Scania is abandoning hydrogen cells in favor of electricity. Is this the end of hydrogen? Although some experts predict that hydrogen is the green fuel of the future, it is unlikely that it will catch on in trucks, at least according to one of the largest manufacturers of such vehicles.

Hydrogen as a fuel is really taking off, and although it will be many years before it will be available in consumer transport, thanks to the efforts of companies such as Toyota, it is becoming more and more common and everyone is beginning to appreciate its advantages. It is convenient for storage, transport and export, and offers high energy density and zero emissions, so it has a chance to revolutionize also aviation and boats. According to many specialists, it is also the future of long-distance land transport, because it is able to keep huge cars on the road longer than electric motors, and does not require wasting time charging the batteries.

However, it seems that not everyone agrees, because for example, Swedish Scania - one of the largest truck manufacturers in the world - has just decided to limit its research in the field of fuel cells and devote more attention to electric motors. And what is worth emphasizing here, Scania offers both solutions, so this is not a reading of coffee grounds, but a decision based on experience. The manufacturer announced that it is leaning towards the latter because fuel cells use renewable energy in an inefficient way, and additional systems are complex and expensive to produce and maintain.

- Scania has invested in hydrogen technology cybernet is currently the only truck manufacturer to offer such solutions to customers. Engineers had visibility into early testing of these solutions and will continue to do so. However, further steps to use hydrogen will be limited as it takes three times as much renewable energy to run a fuel cell engine as electric trucks. A lot of energy is wasted in producing, distributing and converting to electricity. Repairs and maintenance also need to be considered. Hydrogen vehicles will cost more than electric vehicles as their systems are more complex (...) and moreover, hydrogen is volatile and therefore requires more effort to ensure safety, the company said in a statement.

As a reminder, Scania was already experimenting with hybrid trucks with solar panels at the end of last year to support the engine, allowing fuel savings of 5-20%, depending on road conditions, so the company has been thinking about greener solutions. The aforementioned trucks had 18-meter-long trailers, which translates into 140 m2 covered with solar panels, both the sides and the roof. The company has even found a partner who will help to test this solution in practice, and we are talking about the Swedish company Ernst Express, combining a semi-trailer with a Scania hybrid hybrid tractor.