US-based engine maker Cummins is set to develop a new zero-emissions engine to replace existing, large diesel engines used in road haulage.
The work will take place at Cummins’ UK research facility in Darlington, after it received £14.6m of government and industry funding to drive forward the project.
Jonathan Atkinson, executive director of Cummins on-highway business in Europe, said: “This project will significantly accelerate the pace of hydrogen engine development, ensuring that the UK is in the vanguard of this exciting new technology which will play a significant part in de-carbonising the global commercial vehicle fleet.”
The development of the new hydrogen engine is expected to safeguard around 640 jobs at the Cummins Darlington site.
Atkinson added: “The project will maintain and upskill many hundreds of key technical jobs, not just at Cummins and our consortium partners but across our total supply base.
“In the mid-to-long term it offers major potential to expand our high-value export business, supplying hydrogen engines and sub-systems manufactured in the UK to customers around the world.”
Cummins claims its new engine could “potentially revolutionise” how goods are transported, and may prevent over 11 million tons of carbon a year going into the atmosphere.