Air Liquide and Plug Power announced their intent to join forces to develop the market for hydrogen-powered forklift trucks in Europe. Fuel-cell powered forklift trucks is today’s fastest growing hydrogen market. This initiative should lead to the creation of a joint venture between Plug Power and Axane (subsidiary of the Air Liquide group) in France, which would rely on the advanced technology of the GenDrive fuel cell solution from Plug Power, world leader in fuel cells for forklift trucks, for developing, manufacturing and marketing a range of fuel cells for forklift trucks in Europe, and hydrogen refuelling supplied by Air Liquide.
The vehicles running on hydrogen emit almost no greenhouse gases, offer productivity gains and are highly flexible. Hydrogen offers users a source of power that is reliable, profitable andenvironmentally friendly. These advantages have been highlighted in the North-American market where more than 2,300 forklift trucks running on hydrogen will be deployed by the end of 2011. The potential development of this market in Europe could be around 10,000 units by 2015.
An overall package that is totally clean, composed of the GenDrive fuel cell associated with hydrogen supplied by Air Liquide filling stations, would be offered to the European market. Used in a fuel cell, hydrogen combines with oxygen from the air to produce electricity, discharging only water. In the context of the Group’s Blue Hydrogen approach, this hydrogen will be gradually produced without discharge of CO2.
For the full press release go to Air Liquide website