DOE awards grants to evaluate technologies that reduce truck idling

01/29/04

Benefits could include reductions in fuel use, emissions and operating costs

The U.S. Department of Energy's Advanced Vehicle Testing Activity has awarded separate project grants to Caterpillar Inc. and Schneider National Inc. to investigate technologies that reduce truck idling. According to industry experts, truck idling consumes more than 800 million gallons of fuel each year. Reducing the amount of fuel needed to support idling activities, such as cab heating and cooling, offers an opportunity to save fuel, reduce emissions, and cut operating costs.

The total budget for the projects is more than $550,000. This includes grants to Caterpillar and Schneider National, along with at least 50 percent cost sharing from each company. The Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory will oversee the projects. Caterpillar, located in Peoria, Ill., is a leading producer of diesel and natural gas engines. The company received the DOE grant for the project, "Demonstration of the New MorElectric Technology as an Idle Reduction Solution." According to Caterpillar, the project will demonstrate the potential idle reduction benefits of Caterpillar's new MorElectric technology for heating, ventilating, and cooling truck cabs in five test trucks. The project runs through Sept. 30, 2005.

Schneider National, located in Green Bay, Wis., is a top truckload carrier in the United States. Schneider National received the grant for the project, "Cab Heating and Cooling." According to the company, the project will demonstrate cab heating and cooling and engine-off technologies. The project will run through January 2005.

Source: Eurekalert & others

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