The Hydrogen Information Truck H2M, a tractor-trailer, began its road tour through Europe in Italy in spring 2015. The tour’s starting location on April 20 was the Italian parliament; the final destination was Paris at the end of 2015.There, the truck advertises for sustainable environmental policies during the UN Climate Conference (COP 21).
The specially configured truck is thought to explain what the future holds for the hydrogen segment. Its roof and the top-hinged sidewalls were equipped with solar panels (80 m2), with the generated power being used to create hydrogen on the run. This hydrogen will then be compressed in the laboratory and stored away in 20 pressure cylinders of 50 l each, so that it can either generate electricity through fuel cells or be used as an on-the-road refueling option. The trailer with its top-hinged sidewalls contains a presentation room that provides sufficient space for around 50 people and whose electricity demand is covered exclusively by the energy system on board. The 15-meter long truck is powered by an internal combustion engine that has been modified to allow the consumption of methane and hydrogen in addition to diesel. There are already plans to replace the engine by an electric one combined with a fuel cell.
According to Volker Krück from the Board of Directors of the Fondazione H2U, the Hydrogen Information Truck was designed by The Hydrogen University (H2U) foundation and is intended for teaching and learning purposes only. The onboard equipment is “not revolutionary,” as Krück, who still wants to open another branch in Berlin in the second half of 2015, admitted. This is why he has been constantly looking for partners, for instance, which could contribute to the success of the Europe tour by providing the latest hardware. Up to now, several Italian universities have been supporters of the project. Users of the H2M could be schools and universities, but also enterprises.