Hydrogen fuel cell truck start up Hyzon has revealed that it has joined forces with Victorian TAFE organisation, Kangan Institute to develop a hydrogen education and training precinct that it claims will support local learning, training, and modern manufacturing in Melbourne.

The initiative is thanks to a new agreement which will see the two organisations at the forefront of this emerging industry.

Hyzon is a US based developer of fuel cell technology for zero-emission heavy-duty fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV).

In the statement Hyzon says  the Kangan Institute Automotive Centre of Excellence  or ACE as it is known, is  claimed to be Australia’s largest provider of automotive training and is based at its   Docklands Campus in Melbourne, offeings a range of training products to meet industry and critical skills demand.

Hyzon Motors and Kangan Institute  say that together they will develop ‘specialised skills, knowledge, and training solutions this clean energy sector requires to meet this rapidly developing market’.

The two organisations say the collaboration will bring together ‘industry and customers to design and develop hydrogen fuel cell vehicle training to support the commercial deployment of heavy-duty FCEVs in Victoria’.

They say it will also ‘facilitate the meaningful exchange of expertise, resources, and knowledge between the organisations to grow Victoria’s hydrogen value chain’.

Hyzon and Kangan say that under the agreement, graduates and trainees will have the opportunity to build their skills capability with new age manufacturing and vehicle development technology.

Kangan Institute  claims to have one of the strongest apprenticeship programs and skills training offerings in Victoria and is an attractive destination for international students, with more than 3,000 students in training at ACE.

Kangan Institute says it will also work in collaboration with other key TAFE training providers in other states, where Hyzon Motors has and will have FCEVs in deployment.

Earlier this year Kangan Institute opened its new purpose-built electric vehicle (EV) laboratory at ACE Docklands to make inroads into an emerging skills gap of suitably trained electric vehicle technicians in Australia. This expertise makes it an ideal partner for HMA on the development of hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle training.

Hyzon says it established Australia’s first purpose-built assembly plant in Melbourne’s South-East in 2020, to capitalise on the wealth of local industry talent left behind when a number of global automotive businesses shut down their local operations and has grown its local team to over 50 engineers, fabricators, welders, and designers.

Hyzon Motors Australia managing director, John Edgley, said the agreement with the Kangan Institute was another exciting step to solidify Hyzon’s local manufacturing footprint and for the decarbonisation of Australia’s transport sector.

“Our organisational synergies with Kangan Institute and their expertise in EV training position them as a perfect partner to bridge the emerging skills gap in Victoria, “said Edgley.

“We are building zero emission solutions right here in Victoria, drawing on Hyzon’s global fuel cell footprint, using local skills, employing local people.

“We need to harness existing expertise as well as grow it locally, to fundamentally develop a new industry here, that will underpin a sustainable future for our region.”

Kangan Institute chief executive officer, Sally Curtain said working with Hyzon, a national leader in the sector, will be a great complement to the strong collaboration and partnerships at ACE that are required to develop the skills for the automotive workforce of tomorrow.

“We have extensive experience in delivering specialist automotive training to help meet skills demands in Victoria,” said  Curtain.

“Our collaboration with Hyzon will develop cutting-edge training in hydrogen vehicles that have been manufactured here in Victoria.

“This is significant because it will provide apprentices, experienced technicians and first responders with access to local training that supports them to be tech ready as this industry rapidly upscales.”