Allison delivers 3000 Series transmission for refuse collection vehicle

By Julian Buckley24 February 2022

Fuel cell RCV Fuel cell RCV was built by Geesinknorba Group Photo: Allison Transmission

Allison has revealed that it will supply the transmission for the first hydrogen-powered refuse collection vehicle (RCV) operating in the UK.

The new application will see a 45 kW hydrogen fuel cell and a 250 kW Hyzon electric motor paired with an automatic Allison 3000 Series transmission.

The new hydrogen powertrain will be fitted in a Mercedes-Benz Econic RCV featuring a 15 kg H2 fuel tank which can maintain fuel at 350 bar. The system further features a 140 kWh battery pack.

It is estimated that the RCV will have a range of approximately 155 miles (250 km).

The RCV will operate 7.5 hours a day, five days per week. The torque converter auto transmission will support this service where the clutch in a manual or semi-auto transmission would likely wear out.

The vehicle is the latest step in the ‘H2 Aberdeen’ initiative, which has already seen the Scottish city introduce 10 single-deck hydrogen-fuel buses in 2012 and 15 double-deck buses in 2020. In 2018, they deployed the UK’s first hydrogen-powered sweeper, also using an Allison transmission.

Nathan Wilson, Account & Area sales manager, UK & ROI at Allison Transmission, said: “Allison automatics were originally designed for diesel engines, but they are equally well-suited to alternative-fuel and alternative-power vehicles. For these reasons, the council specifically requested that its new hydrogen-powered RCV should also have an Allison transmission.”

Aberdeen’s new RCV is part of the EU’s Interreg HECTOR project, in which seven European regions aim to demonstrate the fuel cell-powered RCVs can help reduce vehicle emissions. Other vehicles in the project, including one based on a DAF chassis, use an Allison transmission.

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