gen is compressed to 350 bar using
a compressor and pumped into interchangeable
containers. After these have
been brought to the filling station, hydrogen
vehicles can be refueled. Since these
only expel water, the cycle closes. A total
of 1,600 such vehicles should be on Swiss
roads by 2025. After the project ramp-up
in Switzerland, Hyundai is also aiming to
expand to other European countries.
FOOD-Lab spoke to Markus von Ballmoos,
the head of logistics at the wellknown
Swiss dairy Emmi.
Mr. von Ballmoos, how do you see the
economy at H2 prices of 12 SFR per kg
H2 with a consumption of 8kg/100 kg
or 1.60 SFR per liter of diesel with an
average consumption of 30 ltr/100 km?
It doesn't pay off yet. The vehicles cannot
be bought at the moment. Financing takes
place via an annual kilometer bill, which
is cheap when you cover long distances,
which is difficult in Switzerland.
However, we do not pay any heavy
vehicle tax for these vehicles and thus
you come close to a zero-sum game. The
contract with H2 Mobility includes the
full operation of the truck with body and
including registration, insurance and tire
wear as well as hydrogen refueling, service
How do you rate hydrogen propulsion
It's an exciting project. I think that we as
Emmi owe it to society to push this project
further and to “serialize” it. From a purely
driver's point of view, the vehicles can be
assessed positively, but in terms of weight,
we can only increase the load and drive
reasonably profitably with a special permit.
But building and operating the entire
petrol station network is a challenge. The
constant high pressure of 350 bar that
needs to be built up and the amount necessary
to refuel several trucks one after
the other are also a major challenge. From
a purely technical point of view, the trucks
Due to the weight of the battery,
the payload seems to be lower and,
according to one of your drivers, a little
more power seems desirable?
A driver always wants a little more performance.
That's normal (laughs). Hyundai's
range of services is similar to that
of other European manufacturers. In my
eyes, performance is not the issue. The
problem is more likely to be seen in the
petrol station area. We hear from the
drivers that they are more relaxed after
a day “on the box” of a fuel cell truck
than after a day on a diesel truck. The
noise and vibration levels are significantly
What about the well-known high pressures
The vehicles are absolutely tight and reliable.
As I said, the problem lies in the
small network of filling stations and the
refueling technology, because experience
shows that the pumps run out of breath
after several trucks have been refueled.
The south of Switzerland has not yet
been developed, but it is under construction.
What made Emmi decide to take part in
In my opinion, the main argument is sustainability.
We don't just want to watch, we have
set ourselves sustainability goals and this
commitment helps to achieve them. We're
not the first, but we're involved. The experiences
that we and Hyundai draw from the
project are important for the future. There
is not just one drive or one single path into
the future. Other ways may also be possible.
What about maintenance/inspection?
I cannot make a statement about the costs
because they are part of the rental agreement.
Regular short inspections, somewhat
more intensive at the beginning of
the term, are planned. So far there have
been no abnormalities.
What is your exact role?
I am the head of logistics/transport and a
member of the management team at Emmi
Switzerland. Emmi has three divisions.
Are you considering purchasing more H2
trucks for other locations?
We have currently placed the trucks at
three locations: our two H2 trucks are
only on the road for the Emmen location.
We started in Emmen because service
and refueling are guaranteed here.
Actually, there are no plans for further H2
trucks at other manufacturing sites.
The technology should also be considered:
Hyundai has the fuel cell on the
vehicle; whereas Mercedes is trying other
concepts such as the range extender, i.e.
expanding the range by combining pure
batteries with fuel cells.
Thank you very much!
H 29 2 trucks