Arizona Utility Converting to Hybrids, DOE Announces $187 Million for Fuel Efficiency Projects

Arizona Utility Converting to Hybrids, DOE Announces $187 Million for Fuel Efficiency Projects

Hybrid utility truck - courtesy APS

APS, an Arizona utility, plans to add to more than 250 hybrid trucks to its fleet over the coming 10 years as part of a vehicle-replacement strategy started last year.

The hybrid trucks (above) will cut fuel use by up to 50 percent by using batteries, instead of the idling engine, to power on-board equipment and the bucket when the truck is being used.

The wider world of vehicle fleets will receive a boost from $187 million in funding to improve fuel efficiency in heavy-duty trucks and passenger vehicles.

Nine projects in the U.S. will receive more than $100 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, with a private cost share of 50 percent. The recipients of the funds, announced by the U.S. Department of Energy, say their projects will create more than 500 research, engineering and management jobs in the short term and over 6,000 manufacturing and assembly jobs by 2015.

Three projects will receive $115 million to work on cost-effective measures that improve the efficiency of Class 8 long-haul freight trucks by 50 percent.

The recipients, how much they will receive, and what they will focus on are:

  • Cummins Inc. - $38.8 million - highly efficient and clean diesel engine, advanced waste heat recovery system, aerodynamic Peterbilt tractor and trailer combination, fuel cell auxiliary power unit to reduce engine idling
  • Daimler Trucks North America, LLC - $39.5 million - engine downsizing, electrification of auxiliary systems like oil and water pumps, waste heat recovery, improved aerodynamics and hybridization
  • Navistar, Inc. - $37.3 million - truck and trailer aerodynamics, combustion efficiency, waste heat recovery, hybridization, idle reduction and reduced rolling resistance tires

The six other projects will receive $71 million to increase the fuel economy for passenger vehicle engines and powertrain systems by 25-40 percent by 2015 using an engine-only approach.
The recipients, how much they will receive, and what they will focus on are:

  • Chrysler Group LLC - $14.4 million - a flexible combustion system for minivans based on a downsized, turbocharged engine that uses direct gasoline injection, recirculation of exhaust gases, and flexible intake air control
  • Cummins Inc. - $15 million - a diesel engine that achieves a 40 percent fuel economy improvement over conventional gasoline technology and significantly exceeds 2010 EPA emissions requirements
  • Delphi Automotive Systems LLC - $7.4 million - a low-temperature combustion system that, coupled with technologies like engine downspeeding, improves fuel economy by at least 25 percent
  • Ford Motor Company - $15 million -a gasoline engine in a 2010 mid- to large-size sedan that achieves a 25 percent fuel economy improvement
  • General Motors Co. - $7.7 million - an engine that uses lean combustion, active heat management, and an emissions control system to improve the fuel economy of a 2010 Malibu demonstration vehicle by 25 percent
  • Robert Bosch - $11.9 million - a high compression, turbo-charged engine based on homogenous charge compression ignition technology (a combustion technology that allows for lower emissions and higher efficiency) to achieve up to 30 percent fuel economy improvement in a gasoline-fueled light-duty vehicle