Linde Material Handling has set out plans to boost its environmental credentials by continuing to carry out research to help develop hybrid vehicles and trucks with hydrogen engines and fuel-cells.
The company is set to promote the development of both technologies over the next few years, with specialists expecting the first hydrogen technology series products to be launched in the vehicle sector between 2015 and 2020.
Until then Linde aims to lower its toxic emissions and energy consumption with the introduction of hybrid vehicles.
The company has also integrated its PureMotion programme into a management strategy based on three main criteria: ergonomics, environment and efficiency.
Central to the strategy is innovative technologies and products, so to coincide with the expansion of the programme Linde has unveiled three new vehicles.
The first is what Linde claims to be the world’s first forklift truck with a direct-injection hydrogen combustion engine.
The vehicle has a load capacity of three tonnes and does not give off any emissions as the hydrogen-powered engine turns the fuel into water vapour.
Linde has said that although the truck is ready for use, it is not expected to be available until 2015 as it is not yet economically viable. Until then the company plans to continue developing further enhancement and complete truck field tests.
The materials handling company has also introduced two hybrid vehicles, a truck with a 3.5 tonne load capacity based on the 39x series diesel version and a zero-emission fuel-cell tow tractor.
All strategic plans and new products were unveiled at CeMAT 2008.