Ballard Power Systems (TSX, NASDAQ: BLDP) is working with two new business partners in India to develop the world’s first hydrogen fuel cell-powered mine truck.
Ballard today announced it has signed an agreement with Adani Enterprises Ltd. and Ashok Leyland on a pilot project to develop a hydrogen fuel cell electric truck for the mining sector.
“This collaboration marks Asia’s first planned hydrogen powered mining truck,” Ballard said in a news release.
The Adani Group is a multi-national conglomerate headquartered in India with multiple business segments, including ports, power generation and transmission, mining and renewable energy. Ashok Leyland is an Indian commercial vehicle manufacturer.
The Adani Group plans to invest $50 billion over the next ten years in green hydrogen and infrastructure, with the goal of producing up to 3 million tonnes of green hydrogen annually.
The mine truck the companies plan to develop would weigh 55 tonnes, have three hydrogen tanks and a 200-kilometre range. It would be powered by Ballard’s 20-kilowatt PEM fuel cell technology.
One of the challenges for decarbonizing mining fleets and equipment is that some mines in remote areas are not connected to a power grid, while others may be connected to grids that generate their power mostly from fossil fuels, like coal and natural gas. Hydrogen fuel cells address this zero emission electrification gap.
“Our technology offers a strong value proposition for their heavy-duty mining truck with our zero emission engines providing long range, rapid refueling and heavy payload capabilities,” said Ballard Power CEO Randy MacEwen.
“This pioneering and ambitious green hydrogen project holds a strong promise for India’s future energy self-reliance and is consistent with the vision of Gautam Adani, chairman of the Adani Group, of accelerating the use of hydrogen-powered fuel cell technology in the commercial transport system,” said Vinay Prakash, CEO of Adani Natural Resources.
“Ashok Leyland is excited to collaborate with Adani and Ballard to bring out fuel cell commercial vehicles in the mining and logistics sectors in India,” said Ashok Leyland CTO N. Saravanan.
“With our track record of developing unique and new products, Ballard's technological expertise in fuel cells, and Adani’s unwavering dedication to hydrogen, there is a significant opportunity for India to decarbonize both goods and passenger transportation.”