Here is a video unveiled earlier this week showing the smart Trailer Drone concept, a hydrogen-powered container transportation system capable of operating fully autonomously. This was presented by Hyundai as part of its Hydrogen Wave event.
With the number of intelligently packaged hydrogen tanks tailored to the journey profile, the flexible and efficient Trailer Drone ensures more than 1,000km of sufficient range from a single charge, comparable to existing container transportation systems.
The autonomous capabilities of the Trailer Drone were not achieved by simply repurposing technology developed for passenger car applications. The unique requirements of container transport applications and the way container terminals operate meant that engineering teams from the Hyundai team needed to completely redefine how a container manoeuvres. As a result, the engineering team developed the ‘Fuel Cell e-Bogie’.
Fuel Cell e-Bogie
The term ‘bogie’ originates from the rail industry. Rail bogies are wheel subframes that sit under every train carriage. The Fuel Cell e-Bogie sits under the container just like a rail bogie and is a fully enclosed system with fuel cell propulsion and fully independent four-wheel steering. The Trailer Drone concept requires two fuel cell e-Bogies.
The vision for Hyundai Motor Group is that by 2040 hydrogen energy will be used not only for transportation but will also be applied to wider areas of industries and sectors. The Group aims to make hydrogen energy available to ‘Everyone, Everything and Everywhere’.
The Trailer Drone can move autonomously as part of portside operations and also in tight urban environments. Efficiency is further boosted by the ‘Cluster Mode’ which enables multiple Trailer Drones to travel together in a platoon-style configuration.
The Fuel Cell e-Bogie is not exclusive to the Trailer Drone and caters to a wide value chain such as ground logistics, construction, firefighting and disaster relief missions. This smart Trailer Drone concept offers a multi-purpose platform, capable of a variety of objectives, all in zero-emission and autonomous operation.