EPRI, Ford and Eaton Developing Plug-in Hybrid Utility Trouble Truck
08 February 2007
|An F-550 trouble truck.|
Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), Eaton, Ford and the California South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD), are developing a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) system for utility trouble trucks and vans.
In Phase 1 of the project, four prototype PHEV trucks based on a Ford F-550 truck chassis will undergo testing this year with the utility partners in the project: Southern California Edison (SCE), Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), and Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E). Phase 2 will expand to 50 trucks and E-450-based vans for utility and public fleets.
The PHEV trouble truck is smaller than the hybrid trouble trucks already being developed and tested through the Hybrid Truck Users Forum (HTUF). (Earlier post.) Smaller trucks have an easier time navigating small access roads and alleys to get to work locations.
AQMD is contributing $300,000 to the $1.6 million project. AQMD is also supporting the EPRI-DaimlerChrysler PHEV Sprint demonstrations. (Earlier post.)
|The hybrid drive architecture. Click to enlarge.|
The F-550 PHEV uses either the 6.8L V10 gasoline or 6.0L V8 diesel engine in a parallel, pre-transmission hybrid architecture.
Design goals for the truck include:
Reduced fuel consumption, reduced emissions, and reduced operating costs compared to stock vehicle, while providing equivalent or superior performance to the base truck in all modes including full cabin air conditioning while operating all accessory loads.
The ability to use grid electricity for part of the vehicle’s daily duty cycle and incorporate regenerative braking with four-wheel drive capability.
30 kW of standby AC generation capacity with 5kW of export power and standby operation time of at least six hours, running the bucket, power tools, lights, and accessories without the need to run the engine.
Advanced battery packaging, charging, and cooling systems lasting the intended vehicle life of five years.
The final design will consider manufacturability, vehicle integration with minimal rework, component costs, and durability to enable approvability by Ford MVE engineering as a ship-thru product and migration of this powertrain to similar class commercial vehicles.
EPRI will work with Eaton to apply modeling to this 17,500 GVW plug-in hybrid prototype based on current work underway to build an Eaton hybrid 30,000 GVW truck.
PG&E, SCE and LADWP will each test the first PHEV utility truck prototype for a defined period and help generate and finalize vehicle specifications. PG&E and SCE will demonstrate diesel PHEVs, and PG&E and LADWP will demonstrate gasoline PHEVs. Additional funding from the California Air Resources Board and other entities is being pursued to add the 46 additional demonstration vehicles in the US and Canada.
I don't understand why it's so hard to make a plug-in hybrid. I would have thought the hybrids we have now would be harder to make. I mean it's the same thing only it can be plugged in to charge, or else if they want to step it up a notch then they can make it so that it'll run on electric only mode for the first 40 miles. But that's been done. Why do they need all these prototypes?
Posted by: Brad | 08 February 2007 at 03:24 PM
Because the current hybrids use different batteries then the plug in ones do with VERY different characteristics. Also they have to test various designs to see wich ones perform best in the field.
Belive it or not professional trucks are a big chunk of bussiness for ford.
Posted by: wintermane | 08 February 2007 at 04:49 PM
One of my concerns with PHEV is who is plugging them into the wall. If well trained utility personnel have problems, it may be too dangerous for the untrained.
Posted by: Kit P | 08 February 2007 at 07:04 PM
I don't see anything about well trained utility personnel having problems plugging them in. A convenient high current charging station is not much of a design challenge.
Posted by: George | 08 February 2007 at 09:11 PM
You are right George, but do you want my list of accidents that were considered incredible until they happened twice in the same year? For PHEVs to become popular enough to make a difference, plugging them in needs to be safe and convenient. In any case, it should be at least as safe as putting gasoline in your car. If there is a way to screw up, PG&E, SCE and LADWP will find it or they could ask for help from SMUD.
Posted by: Kit P | 09 February 2007 at 06:15 AM
The problem with fool proof systems is that nature keeps producing better fools.
Posted by: tom deplume | 09 February 2007 at 07:18 AM
As I remember it more then one person has died recharging abattery pack mainly because your dealing with such high voltage and amperage levels the power can o some things people just dont expect.
Posted by: wintermane | 10 February 2007 at 08:45 AM
HENRY FORD IS TURNING OVER IN HIS GRAVE. WHY DID
FORD SALES DROP 19%? IT IS NOT POLITICALLY CORRECT
TO SAY IT BUT IT IS BECAUSE CHRISTIANS HAVE
BOYCOTTED FORD DUE TO BILL FORD'S IMMORAL STANCE
IN GIVING MILLIONS TO GROUPS LIKE NORTH AMERICAN
MEN-BOYS ASSOCIATION, ETC. BILL FORD HAS BEEN
DOING TOO MUCH OF THE PLUG-IN!
Posted by: richard newton, sr. | 11 February 2007 at 07:06 PM