Truck with Prototype Fuel Cell Visits UA

  • May 26th, 2003

A heavy-duty highway tractor truck equipped with a first-of-its-kind fuel-cell auxiliary power unit (APU), which is designed to reduce diesel fuel consumption and emissions, recently made a stop at the UA College of Engineering.

Researchers in UA’s Center for Advanced Vehicle Technologies have been directly involved with the development of the truck-mounted device.

The Freightliner Class 8 Sleeper Cab truck is equipped with a fuel-cell APU, which generates power for the truck’s onboard electronics and appliances. The APU has the potential to reduce substantially fuel usage, vehicle emissions and maintenance costs by more efficiently and cleanly meeting power needs. This prototype APU recently was awarded the Automotive Engineering International Tech 2003 Award for being one of the top technologies on display at the Society of Automotive Engineers’ World Congress in Detroit, Mich.

UA’s Center for Advanced Vehicle Technologies supports the fuel-cell APU partnership by providing noise and vibration analysis and system modeling capabilities. For more information about the CAVT, visit the website at

The University of Alabama, part of The University of Alabama System, is the state’s flagship university. UA shapes a better world through its teaching, research and service. With a global reputation for excellence, UA provides an inclusive, forward-thinking environment and nearly 200 degree programs on a beautiful, student-centered campus. A leader in cutting-edge research, UA advances discovery, creative inquiry and knowledge through more than 30 research centers. As the state’s largest higher education institution, UA drives economic growth in Alabama and beyond.