Autoline After Hours Podcast

Navigant sits down with Autoline After Hours to offer insight into the transportation space

Sam Abuelsamid, a Navigant senior research analyst, recently joined Autoline After Hours in a podcast video session to offer insight into recent news in the transportation space.

Larger topics included a graphene-based car seat product, recent fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV) collaborations between car manufacturers, Audi’s CEO ousting, and various new manufacturer subscription-based customer care programs for vehicles.

During the discussion with Chuck Cauchy, president and CTO of Promethean, regarding Thermavance, a new graphene technology combined with electronic heat pumping used on car seats, Abuelsamid commented, “Certainly you have the packaging advantages compared to a conventional system, and lower power draw, so the net is going to come out way ahead — especially for an electric vehicle.”

As the topic moved to the news that Audi and Hyundai had started a fuel cell partnership to work on fuel cell technology, Abuelsamid explained Hyundai has been among the leaders in development of fuel cells with aggressively push technology in fuel cell crossover vehicles.

“I'm sure they’re [Audi] looking at what Hyundai is doing and saying, ‘There's some stuff we can adapt there as an alternative,' especially for some of the larger vehicles that Audi does.That's really where fuel cells seem like they have the most potential — in larger vehicles, larger SUVs, and crossovers."

Abuelsamid also offered an example of another company aggressively pursuing fuel cells and hydrogen infrastructure.

“I think there's a lot of interesting applications for fuel cells besides the larger vehicles I mentioned. You got Nikola Motors moving very aggressively and getting some pretty big orders for their larger vehicle for their long-haul truck, and they're working with Bosch, a major supplier, and not only developing the propulsion system, but also developing an infrastructure to support those long-haul trucks; [they’re] doing localized production of hydrogen instead of trucking in or piping in hydrogen to fueling stations, because these trucks are going to be running across country very long distances.”

As for fueling, according to Abuelsamid, it’s not practical to transport hydrogen fuel. However, when it is produced along major trucking routes (via electrolysis and using renewable energy and a water source), it becomes much more convenient for fleet vehicles.

“And then another potential long-term application is automated mobility services for these vehicles. These automated mobility vehicles, you want to have them in and out, and you want to maximize your uptime. You don't want them sitting around plugged in for hours on end every day, and if you have a fleet of vehicles that's operating in a geo-fenced area, you know you don't actually need that many stations to service a fleet. They can get come get refilled with hydrogen and be back on the road in just a few minutes,” said Abuelsamid.

Listen to the full podcast or watch the video to hear Abuelsamid explain further how customers and vehicle manufacturers will pay for and manage automated mobility services.

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