Eaton begins hybrid production for medium sized trucks

Eaton Corporation announced on 09 Aug 2007 that the company’s medium-duty hybrid power systems are now commercially available and will be ready for customer deliveries in 2008 on the chassis of several major North American commercial vehicle manufacturers. These include International, Kenworth , Peterbilt and Freightliner.

The announcement follows more than four years of development and two million miles of successful field-testing in North America, Europe and Asia. Fleet customers for Eaton hybrid power have so far included FedEx Express, UPS, Coca-Cola, Pepsi and 14 public utility fleets into which were placed 24 hybrid-powered repair trucks. Additional testing is taking place in Europe with DAF Trucks, and in Asia with the Beiqi Foton Bus Company, one of China’s largest commercial vehicle producers. Eaton hybrid power systems in these and other applications are generating fuel economy improvements of up to 60 percent and significant reductions in harmful emissions.

According to Kevin Beaty, manager of Eaton’s Hybrid Power Systems business unit, the company plans to produce several hundred systems in 2007 and is planning to ramp-up production capacity over the next three years in order to meet customer demand and achieve economies of scale.

In the hybrid systems being released into production, Eaton employs a parallel-type diesel-electric hybrid architecture with Eaton’s Fuller® UltraShift® automated transmission. More information, including good diagrams, can be found on the Roadranger Hybrid Power Systems web page.In addition to its diesel-electric hybrid products, Eaton is also developing advanced hybrid systems using hydraulic power and a “parallel hydraulic hybrid” system that utilizes regenerative braking.

Source: Eaton via The Age

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