Hexagon Composites and Hexagon Purus recently announced that it signed an agreement to acquire a 40% stake in Cryoshelter GmbH, an Austria based company specialized in the development of cryogenic tank technology for liquid (renewable) natural gas (LNG/RLNG) and liquid hydrogen (LH2).
Hexagon is pleased to announce that the transaction has been successfully completed, and Hexagon Composites now owns 40% of Cryoshelter’s LNG/RLNG business, with options to buy remaining interests over the next 3-10 years.
Hexagon Purus has also completed the acquisition of its previously announced 40% stake in Cryoshelter’s LH2 business (reference Hexagon Purus announcement, 21 April 2022).
The Hexagon Group provides compressed natural gas (CNG), including renewable natural gas (RNG), compressed hydrogen and battery-electric systems as part of its portfolio of clean fuel vehicle solutions. Liquid storage of (renewable) natural gas and hydrogen will add a new dimension to its existing offering, complementing its portfolio and unlocking new opportunities for Hexagon Agility and Hexagon Purus, respectively.
The Hexagon and Cryoshelter partnership will accelerate Cryoshelter’s existing LNG/RLNG technology and production capability and use the LNG technology platform to further develop LH2 solutions for the heavy-duty transportation sector.
Cryoshelter is split into separate legal entities for the LNG/RLNG and LH2 businesses. Hexagon Agility and Hexagon Purus will take two seats each on the respective boards of Cryoshelter’s two businesses.
Expanding clean fuel options for commercial trucks
In contrast with North America, where compressed (renewable) natural gas (RNG/CNG) is the primary natural gas technology for long-haul trucking, LNG/RLNG has emerged as the leading natural gas alternative in Europe due to a significant infrastructure network, favorable cost position and preferred truck configuration.
Over the last several years, the number of new LNG truck registrations and fueling stations have increased significantly, and higher growth is expected over the next decade as fleet operators are opting for readily available, cost competitive fuels with immediate emission saving potential such as biomethane (or RNG). In liquid form, natural gas has a higher energy density. Cryoshelter’s technology will leverage this energy density to better utilize vehicle frame rail space and provide a driving range that is comparable to diesel.
Supported by European legislation, it is expected that renewable natural gas, alongside battery-electric and fuel cell-electric technologies will play a key role in the efforts to decarbonize the commercial transportation sector in Europe.
Liquid hydrogen, a compelling future alternative
Hydrogen is gathering strong momentum as a key energy transition pillar towards zero emission, and is underpinned by a global shift of regulators, investors, and consumers increasingly focused on decarbonization. It has become clear that hydrogen will play a key role in decarbonizing “hard to abate” sectors.
Liquid hydrogen storage technology can offer higher energy density compared to compressed hydrogen storage, and in space and/or payload-constrained applications, such as certain heavy-duty trucking applications, shipping, commercial aviation, and aerospace, it could be a compelling future alternative.