Interesting Engineering’s Chris Young interviews Chris Voorhees, CEO of First Mode, on the approach to decarbonizing heavy industry and the recent partnership announcement between Anglo American and First Mode.
Key to First Mode’s success so far, Voorhees says, is the concept of “technology agnosticism”… Hydrogen versus electric vehicles is “the wrong argument,” he claims. “It reminds me of the solar versus wind argument that happened with renewable energy in the late 90s and early 2000s. Like, which one of these is the right one to win? It turns out both were really good. And I feel the same way here. I look at them as complementary technologies. And we use both.”
“Our [nuGen] system is really a hybrid,” Voorhees continues. “We’re taking and replacing the diesel element with the next best, most potent fuel source, which is hydrogen, and augmenting that with the power output, and the ability to be able to store while operating with battery.” The result is a zero-emissions truck capable of carrying 290 tons of mining materials. And it will keep 700 cars’ worth of carbon dioxide emissions out of the atmosphere, according to Anglo American.