Westport Unveils Hydrogen Combustion Fuel System – Fuel Smarts


Westport Fuel Systems said its H2 HDPI fuel system burns hydrogen in a modified internal combustion engine with almost no carbon emissions and higher performance than the base diesel engine.

Photo: Westport Fuel Systems


Westport Fuel Systems has developed a new fuel system capable of burning hydrogen in heavy-duty internal combustion truck engines.

According to the company. A Westport official said the company had achieved even better results by adapting the HPDI fuel system to run on hydrogen, while meeting global emissions regulations.

HPDI fuel system technology uses compression ignition combustion, with the overwhelming majority of energy coming from the combustion of, typically, a gaseous fuel, such as natural gas. Combustion is initiated via direct injection at the end of the cycle of a small quantity of pilot fuel (diesel fuel, in the case of the H2 HPDI system), followed by direct injection of the primary gaseous fuel. Both fuels are injected via an exclusive concentric twin-needle injector design. By using Diesel-Cycle thermodynamics, the HPDI fuel system retains the thermal efficiency, horsepower, torque and engine braking of the base diesel internal combustion engine, explained Scott Baker, vice president of engineering, during an online press conference on May 3.


Testing has validated that the H2 HPDI can produce significantly higher peak torque and horsepower than the natural gas HPDI or base diesel engine, taking advantage of the combustion characteristics of H2 and without exceeding the mechanical limits of the engine , according to Westport.  The H2 HPDI allows for higher vehicle performance and/or a significant downsizing of the engine, with associated cost savings.  - Source: Westport Fuel Systems

Testing has validated that the H2 HPDI can produce significantly higher peak torque and horsepower than the natural gas HPDI or base diesel engine, taking advantage of the combustion characteristics of H2 and without exceeding the mechanical limits of the engine , according to Westport.

H2 HPDI enables superior vehicle performance and/or significant engine downsizing, with associated cost savings.

Source: Westport Fuel Systems


“HPDI has long been recognized as the equivalent of diesel engine performance and efficiency,” Baker said. “And now we have demonstrated significantly higher power, torque and efficiency than the base diesel engine by switching from natural gas HPDI to HPDI H2. The advantage of HPDI combustion is that it retains the high compression ratio of the base diesel engine and does not suffer from engine knock because the H2 is injected towards the end of the compression stroke just after the start of the pilot ignition and combustion.”

A demonstrator truck presents HPDI hydrogen technology

David Johnson, CEO of Westport Fuel Systems, said the H2 HPDI fuel system is installed in a fully functional demonstration vehicle to show how easily a commercially available production HPDI LNG system can run on carbon-free fuel. such as green hydrogen.

The HPDI H2 fuel system offers a cost-effective carbon-free solution, he said, that delivers up to 98% CO2 reduction from tank to tailpipe compared to diesel. This will allow automakers to leverage their investment in vehicle driveline design, supply chain and manufacturing by continuing to plan around low-carbon hydrogen internal combustion engines.

The H2 HPDI demo truck will be on display at the 2022 ACT Expo in Long Beach, CA from May 9-12.

“We think the H2 HPDI is compelling, with near-zero greenhouse gas emissions at a lower cost than fuel cell vehicles or battery electric vehicles, especially for heavy and long-haul trucking. mail,” Johnson added. “We developed the engine to utilize HPDI’s ability to deliver what is needed in the market today, using hydrogen instead of natural gas, with development work underway at the Westport facility. Fuel Systems and through previously announced programs with AVL/TUPY, and Scanie. And we expect new H2 HPDI programs with other partners to come soon.

Johnson also noted that Westport has thousands of HPDI trucks on the road today, with HPDI sales in Europe growing more than 100% annually for the past three years.

“It’s an amazing development,” Johnson continued. “Decarbonizing heavy trucking has been particularly challenging because it has always been important to bring an affordable product to market that can be widely adopted at scale, while delivering performance very similar to diesel engines. And with H2 HDPI, we have a system that can deliver that performance in a cost-effective way to use gaseous fuels to reduce carbon emissions.