Crown Reveals List of Qualified Electric Forklifts

Crown Equipment Corp., New Bremen, Ohio, has qualified 20 of its electric forklift models to operate with various fuel cells. The company now offers 29 qualified combinations of fuel cell packs and trucks.

In 2009, Crown introduced a fuel cell qualification program that approves electric forklifts for use with fuel cell packs and provides certifications to customers. To qualify a fuel cell pack and truck combination, Crown’s engineers review key performance metrics for a battery-powered truck, such as traction, plugging, and lift and travel speeds. They then replace the battery with a fuel cell power pack and measure the same indicators. Through both modeling and application testing, the research team determines specific design modifications needed to ensure the fuel cell-powered forklift matches the performance, efficiency and safety standards to which the truck was initially designed.

“We’ve been steadfast in our position that deployment of a fuel cell forklift fleet must be carefully evaluated and tested for appropriate use in a warehouse,” said Eric Jensen, manager of new technology, research and development. This research-based approach means that our customers can confidently know they have the right truck for their chosen fuel cell, allowing them to meet their performance, safety and environmental sustainability goals.”

“Forklifts are a key early market for fuel cells,” said Lisa Callaghan Jerram, senior market analyst for Fuel Cell Today, a firm providing market-based research on the fuel cell industry. “Based on our market research, we have found strong growth in this sector in the past three years."