Ministry of Defence visits Hysolar

20 October 2021

On 20 October, representatives of the Ministry of Defence paid a working visit to Hysolar to learn more about the applications of hydrogen. The ministry also signed up as the 100th participant of the Covenant on Hydrogen in Mobility for the Province of Utrecht!

Defence working visit to Hysolar. Source: Ministry of Defence

Hydrogen as a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels

Hydrogen is one of the sustainable alternatives to fossil fuels in vehicles, vessels and aircraft. By means of a fuel cell or through its use in a combustion engine, hydrogen can be used in light and heavy transport. Thus, for example, at Jos Scholman Contractors and KWR about 20 passenger cars already use fuel cells. To increase the sustainability of heavy transport and mobile equipment, the Dual Fuel technique has been developed. This transition solution makes it possible to get started with hydrogen right away.

Presentation of one of the Dual Fuel tractors at Jos Scholman Contractors. Source: Ministry of Defence

Defence vehicles on hydrogen

As part of the plan, the Ministry of Defence will eventually have at least 3 vehicles running on hydrogen in the province. The ministry is also investigating the possibility of storing hydrogen on its own sites, and whether there is room for a semi-public hydrogen filling station. Lastly, it is exploring, without obligation, the possibilities for using hydrogen in military equipment. The hydrogen-powered vehicles are still under development. At the end of this year it will become clear when Defence will be able to deploy them.

Sustainable mobility in the province

The province’s objective is to achieve more sustainable mobility before the end of 2025. This means that hundreds of vehicles and ships will have to run on green hydrogen by that time. This objective dovetails with Defence’s zero-emission vehicle project. Hydrogen can make a big contribution, says DOSCO Rear Admiral Peter Knipping.  ‘Every litre of diesel in a generator in a distant mission area, has cost many times as many litres to get it there. This can be done differently and hydrogen is one solution.’

‘We hope to show that Defence, based on the “stronger together” principle, desires to strengthen the region not only through words alone, but also through action. We’re doing this by linking other Defence initiatives already underway, such as zero-emission vehicles and sustainable area development, with the ambitions of municipalities and the Province of Utrecht.

Defence is 100th signatory of Covenant on Hydrogen in Mobility

The Covenant on Hydrogen in Mobility for the Province of Utrecht was officially signed on 23 April this year by 75 parties. The covenant’s objective is to stimulate the use and production of green hydrogen for mobility in the Province of Utrecht, with each signatory contributing to the joint ambition based on its particular role. The Ministry of Defence is now the 100th signatory. The initiators of the covenant, the Province of Utrecht, the Energy Collective Utrecht (ECUB) and KWR, are delighted that Defence wanted to sign up as number 100. Executive Council Member, Arne Schaddelee:

‘It’s great that Defence has signed our covenant. Developing a hydrogen infrastructure means pioneering. And pioneering work is often entrusted to Defence; they can do it like no other. By signing this covenant, the ministry wants to give the sustainability process a boost, and that pleases me greatly. We are also happy to take part in the thinking about zero-emission mobility within Defence. In this way we complement one another.’

Formal moment of signing by Defence with the Province of Utrecht, at KWR in Nieuwegein. Source: Ministry of Defence

Also want to sign up?

If you would also like to become a signatory, please directly download the complete covenant (Word document) and the sign-up form (Word document), or go to Send the completed form with your logo (as a .png file) to