The technology group Rheinmetall is successfully expanding its business with products in the field of fuel cell technology. Rheinmetall has received two initial orders for coolant control valves for use in fuel cell-powered trucks from one of the largest international commercial vehicle manufacturers. The fuel cell represents a crucial CO2-neutral drive solution, especially for heavy-duty trucks.
The total order value is in the mid double-digit million euro range. The first delivery will be in 2024 in an initial three-digit number of trucks; production in larger quantities is planned for 2028.
An electronic thermostat valve (3/2-way valve) and an electronic coolant valve (2/2-way valve), which are used in the cooling circuit of a fuel cell, were commissioned.
The service life of a fuel cell reacts to high coolant temperatures with severe impairment. The newly developed Rheinmetall valves feature a significant improvement in highly dynamic and very precise control of the coolant temperature. Previously used thermostats with expansion elements are characterized by hysteresis and are therefore both sluggish and inaccurate.
In addition to temperatures that are too high, temperatures that are too low also have a negative effect on the fuel cell. Using the Rheinmetall valves, one is available – depending on the individual application requirements
selectable, precise setting of the required coolant flow possible. The electronic actuator used is a proven, smart truck actuator with CANBus-capable electronics and an electronically commutated motor.
The customer was also impressed by the extremely low coolant pressure loss with minimal leakage as well as the innovative design, which allows for optimal installation space and compact packaging.
The Rheinmetall Group has developed an extensive range of products for the operation of fuel cells. Rheinmetall has been working with fuel cell technology for almost twenty years and can draw on extensive experience here.