Power Electronics

EPA building hydraulic hybrid urban delivery vehicle

With the aid of UPS, Eaton Corp., International Truck and Engine Corp., the U.S. Army National Automotive Center and the Environmental Protection Agency are building the world's first full hydraulic hybrid urban delivery vehicle, with significantly improved fuel economy and reduced harmful emissions. The partnership capitalizes on two EPA breakthroughs--full hydraulic hybrid and clean diesel combustion (CDC)--which were invented and patented at EPA's National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory in Ann Arbor, Mich.

The first phase features a full hydraulic hybrid powertrain and an innovative hydraulic hybrid propulsion system integrated with the drive axle. Hydraulic motors and tanks are used to store energy, in contrast to electric motors and batteries used in electric hybrid vehicles. Like other hybrid systems, energy saved when applying the brakes is reused to aid in acceleration.

The second phase, expected within a year, would add a CDC engine capable of showing cost-effective compliance with the 2010 diesel emission standards without needing any NOx reduction controls in the exhaust system.

Together, the technologies enable the world's cleanest, most fuel-efficient, and most cost-effective urban delivery vehicle, achieving 90% reduction in NOx emissions in meeting the 2010 diesel emission standards without the added cost of NOx after treatment, 60% to 70% better fuel economy, and fast payback for the cost of the technology. A typical urban delivery vehicle using this technology in stop-go traffic could save $2,500 in fuel each year (assuming 25,000 miles per year and $2 per gallon fuel.)

TAGS: Automotive
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