Toyota announced on September 18th that the company will begin testing on its portable electricity replenishment vehicle, which charges various vehicles and machinery through the battery stored by fuel cells, in order to replace the current main charging method: fuel generator.
Although HEV leader Toyota does not have its own BEV products, the enormous technology and resources that the company possesses are not to be trifled with. Toyota has worked with major generator manufacturer Denyo to create this fuel cell recharging truck in the hope of replenishing the existing void of inadequate establishment of charging network.
Despite having no BEV, and that the fuel cell vehicle Mirai has been unsatisfactory in sales volume, Toyota still wishes to locate new paths for its technology through this particular method.
This truck has been modified from Toyota Dyna, and is equipped with 27 units of high pressure hydrogen tanks, which are able to store 1,626L of hydrogen that can be converted into 612 kWh of electricity and an 8.5 kW power output through Toyota’s fuel cell technology.
Toyota and Denyo work with the Ministry of the Environment on developing this project, and the primary objective is to prepare for the future of electrification in advance. Under the electrification trend for transportation, emergency vehicles including ambulances and fire trucks are likely to be electrified gradually, and may experience unexpected power depletion or prolonged standby time in the midst of major disasters, which require the help of emergency power sources.
The most common small portable power generator currently is diesel power generator, which is the machine that emits deafening sound and the odor of diesel combustion during concerts or large events.
In fact, this is an important employment opportunity for Toyota. Despite the numerous advantages, fuel cell vehicles contain multiple restrictions, including the following: 1) difficulties in hydrogen recharging infrastructures compared to charging stations, 2) the process of power conversion for fuel cells is restricted by film efficiency, thus the force is constrained, and 3) the dimension and weight of fuel cells is a heavy burden for small passenger vehicles.
This electricity replenishment vehicle of a simple purpose has avoided these restrictions and become the flexible node within the charging network. The vehicle itself also uses fuel cell power, unlike some Chinese automotive manufacturers that use fuel vehicles installed with power generators to help with charging.
However, this electricity replenishment vehicle is unable to provide a rapid charging of more than 150 kW, which provides limited usefulness during emergency situations.
(Cover photo source: Toyota)