Hydrogen-powered electric bus to begin trial in Australia

SYDNEY: In a move toward zero-emission technology, the Australian state of New South Wales (NSW) announced on Wednesday that its first testing of a hydrogen-powered electric bus will begin later this year.

To test the future fuel source, the government is collaborating with local and national industry sources. According to the Xinhua news agency, bus operators are also participating in the study to help understand how the technology could be applied across regional NSW. "Unlocking hydrogen use in the heavy transport sector is critical to the development of new sectors and the economic success that comes with them," said NSW Treasurer and Energy Minister Matt Kean.

After the first hydrogen fuel cell electric bus arrives on the Central Coast in east NSW, a local testing of the technology will commence. Before being used in the trial, the bus will have to pass on-road testing.

Sam Farraway, the Minister for Remote Transport and Roads in NSW, noted that in some regional locations, buses must drive longer miles before refuelling, which is why trials like these are crucial. "Hydrogen buses have a longer range than battery-electric buses, making them better suitable for use in the state's regional and outlying urban areas," Farraway explained.

"The results of the Central Coast battery-electric bus trial will be compared to the hydrogen bus to see if there are any significant differences, such as fuel economy and refuelling times." The pilot is part of the state government's effort to meet zero-emission targets with alternative transportation choices that are conceived, constructed, and supported entirely in Australia.

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