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Renault Trucks investigating Rankine cycle waste heat recovery system

Renault Trucks, a member of the Volvo Group, is exploring the use of a Rankine-cycle-based waste-heat-recovery system for its long-haul trucks.

The Rankine cycle is a simple closed thermodynamic cycle that converts heat from an external source into work. With the system, enthalpy of the vehicle’s exhaust gases is recovered and then converted into electricity by a generator incorporated into the turbine. The electricity would be used to supply electrical components and auxiliary equipment on the vehicle, so as to cut fuel consumption by reducing the load on the alternator.

The Rankine system makes it possible to generate several kilowatts of electricity. Ultimately, the Rankine system is capable of reducing long distance vehicle fuel consumption by between 5% and 10%, says Renault.

Almost 30% of a vehicle’s full tank of fuel is dissipated in the form of heat in the exhaust gases. This is a total waste. The Rankine system enables us to recover some of the energy contained in these exhaust gases and convert it into electricity.

—Dimitri Lortet, engine development project manager





It's about time to take appropriate actions to recover some of the 60+% energy wasted in long haul trucks and most other ICVEs.


No it's not about time,

It is yet another investigation in a long line to determine if it IS time; to determine if technology has advanced so that this obvious improvement is practical
a simple minded knee jerk reaction to the fact that it is possible so it MUST be done at any cost.


By continuously sticking to the very lowest cost, most will end up living in low cost shacks that can be blown away by 100 kph winds, eating low cost junk foods that will make them obese and sick, driving 8 mpg low quality junk pick-ups polluting the air with imported Oil, wearing lowest cost clothing and shoes, smoke (more) low cost counterfeit cigarettes and get lung cancer, etc etc.

If that is the way the majority (South of the Border) wants to go, so be it. They may not live long enough to learn of better ways. Future storms may blow many of them out in the ocean but the 3% will survive in their well built mansions.


Rankine cycle is outdated. It is time to use a more efficient thermoelectric converter.

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