Hyundai Xcient Fuel Cell Heavy Duty Truck Hydrogen
Hyundai Motor Co.

Hyundai to Sell Hydrogen-Powered Trucks Stateside in 2022

Hyundai Motor Co. recently announced plans to sell hydrogen fuel cell-powered trucks in the United States by 2022.

The Seoul-based auto manufacturer said the U.S. rollout of the trucks would begin with an initial pilot program in California in 2021. The U.S. rollout will add to Hyundai’s current hydrogen-truck operations in Switzerland, where 10 of the Xcient Fuel Cell Trucks were recently shipped.

Hyundai, in a conference call held September 15, said it planned to ship 50 units by this year and increase production to 1,600 by 2025. Details of the call were reported by JoongAng Daily, an English-language daily published by one of South Korea's largest newspapers. In order to mitigate a prominent weakness of hydrogen-powered vehicles, Hyundai plans to sell the trucks to large clients that operate fleets of between 3,000 to 5,000 trucks—such clients usually run their vehicles on set routes, which should reduce the burden to Hyundai of building charging infrastructure for the vehicles.

Hyundai’s latest announcement on its entrance to the U.S. hydrogen-truck market also comes on the heels of trouble for Nikola Co., which is reportedly under investigation after a short-seller accused the company of misrepresenting its technology to investors. A Nikola board member has asserted that

Hydrogen-powered trucks, although dismissed by electric-vehicle tycoon Elon Musk, is an increasingly-populated area in changing automotive landscape.

While Hyundai reportedly called Toyota its strongest competitor on the hydrogen-mobility scene, Nikola also seeks to leave its stake in the hydrogen-powered truck market. Nikola also recently cut a partnership deal with General Motors Co. that saw the more established automaker take an 11% stake in the former and agree to help manufacture its electric pickups and hydrogen tractor-trailers.

One advantage fuel-cell-powered trucks have over those powered purely by electricity stored in batteries is weight. While one area of keen focus in battery research and development is devoted to making batteries weigh less, fuel-cell trucks can convert stored hydrogen—the lightest gas in the universe—into electricity and water vapor on the road. But they face a substantial hurdle in the limited availability of hydrogen refueling stations.

This article has been updated.

Sense Aware Id Small Lean 4x6@300dpi
FedEx SenseAware

Time for Tracking to Improve?

Whenever a vaccine is ready for distribution to the global population, its distribution is sure to create an entirely new batch of challenges. Accurate tracking that goes beyond the traditional scanning that many logistics providers leverage will prove instrumental, especially as security concerns surface. 

To combat these challenges FedEx recently announced the launch of SenseAware ID, a lightweight sensor-based logistics device that delivers a new level of precision tracking. The enhanced location visibility provided by this technology will create opportunities for FedEx customers to reimagine their supply chain through real-time updates on a package’s location within the FedEx Express network. SenseAware ID will improve the safety, security and timeliness of deliveries – key attributes for packages that contain critical contents such as life-saving pharmaceuticals and emergency medical supplies.

The detailed location data provided by SenseAware ID is a critical differentiator for healthcare industry customers, and FedEx expects to use this new technology with anticipated COVID-19 vaccine shipments. The rollout of SenseAware ID is well-timed as FedEx continues to move life-saving pharmaceuticals and medical supplies for healthcare customers throughout the U.S.

“Package tracking and visibility are more important now than ever, as businesses have become increasingly reliant on timely deliveries,” said Robert B. Carter, executive vice president and chief information officer, FedEx Corporation. “Created by our innovation teams at FedEx, SenseAware ID was designed to give our customers the precise level of tracking they’ve been looking for, enabling them to optimize their supply chains and make any necessary adjustments during the journey of their shipments.”

Sense AwareFedEx SenseAwareFedEx has long been a pioneer in sensor-based logistics, providing advanced tracking of urgent and high value shipments for over a decade through its proprietary SenseAware portfolio. SenseAware ID is the latest innovation in FedEx sensor technology, designed to make sensor-based logistics more accessible to FedEx customers.

SenseAware ID uses a lightweight, compact sensor that transmits precise package location data every two seconds via Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) to WiFi access points or established gateway devices throughout the FedEx Express network. Packages equipped with the SenseAware ID sensor are tracked hundreds of times versus dozens of times with traditional package scanning protocols, which provides an unprecedented amount of real-time data about the location of the shipment.

As part of the initial roll-out, SenseAware ID sensors are being applied to First Overnight shipments within the U.S. domestic FedEx Express network. An initial round of customers in the healthcare, aerospace and retail industries will receive access to the enhanced data in November 2020. FedEx expects to expand access to this precision location data to additional customers throughout the first half of 2021. SenseAware ID will eventually be made available for a broad range of premium FedEx Express services.

The enhanced package visibility data provided by SenseAware ID will give FedEx healthcare customers the opportunity to closely monitor and proactively protect shipments using additional FedEx healthcare services, including cold-chain storage, thermal blankets and temperature controlled containers. SenseAware ID is expected to play a critical role in the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines using the FedEx First Overnight service, helping ensure these sensitive shipments are delivered quickly and safely.