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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-23-2006, 10:31 AM Thread Starter
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Hybrid UPS delivery truck

I saw this article from the Environmental News Network and thought is was interesting about the hybrid UPS delivery truck, What do you guys think?:

ENN FULL STORY
Hydraulic Hybrid Trucks Promise Fuel Savings, Cleaner Air

June 22, 2006 By David Hammer, Associated Press
WASHINGTON The U.S. government released a model delivery truck, replete with a new hybrid hydraulic system built for the Environmental Protection Agency that will be tested on the streets of Detroit in August.

The new system replaces a truck's transmission with hydraulics and that, combined with a low-emission diesel engine, yields a 60 percent to 70 percent saving on fuel use.

"We work on a lot of different hydraulic equipment for aerospace and this fits in very well," said Ben Hoxie, Eaton Corp's engineering manager for the project.

For the Environment Protection Agency, the project was about making the most immediate impact on air standards and fuel economy after President Geroge W. Bush called for the United States to reduce its dependence on foreign oil. Delivery trucks pile up the hours and miles (kilometers) with city driving. They were among the most likely to benefit from a drivetrain that transfers the energy lost in braking into a series of fluid and air pumps that in turn power acceleration.

The EPA estimates it will take the delivery company involved in the tests less than three years to recover the $7,000 (euro5,500) of outfitting each of its trucks with the new hydraulic system by saving money on fuel and reducing brake wear.

Thd delivery company will keep a close eye on drivability and maintenance issues during the Detroit test runs. The truck already has a big fan in driver Dave Schuler, who took it for a spin in front of the EPA offices in Washington.

"You'd be surprised how it drives because it makes no noise," he said. "You wouldn't think it would have the power for a truck this size."

The delivery company, United Parcel Service partnered with the EPA; Eaton; International Truck and Engine Corp., UPS' largest supplier; and the Army in February 2005 to develop a green fleet of low-emissions vehicles. Eaton started working with EPA in 2001 to develop the hydraulics. It's already provided a similar system for the Army, which is watching the tests to see if it can use the technology to increase by half the fuel economy in its Humvees.

Source: Associated Press

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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-23-2006, 10:41 AM
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Re: Hybrid UPS delivery truck

I think that's a great idea. I'm a switcher for FedEx Ground... I move trailers around the yard and back 'em all up to the docks to be loaded/unloaded. I don't drive on the streets, I just work within the compound. The first time I had to fill up the fuel tank, I went to the fuel pump, and put in 35 gallons. This might not be a big shock to some of you, but it was for me. All I've ever been used to, is filling up about 11-12 gallons in my car, every week or two. We've got three or four switchers at work that need to be filled up every day. It made me feel like a polluter lol. That, plus after driving the thing around for 8 hours, I'm covered with tiny black specs. It all comes from the exhaust, it shoots straight up into the air, and falls right back down on me.

I can't even begin to comprehend just how many miles UPS and FedEx travel. I think the little bit of driving I do at work is bad, making this conversion for trucks that deliver packages would be HUGE.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-23-2006, 10:48 AM
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Re: Hybrid UPS delivery truck

With the millions of miles UPS drives weekly, they stand to save a lot of $$ on fuel.....even greatly offsetting the higher price I'm sure these trucks will cost them. I wonder what reliablility is like for the 'hydraulics' that replaces the transmission.
post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-23-2006, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Hybrid UPS delivery truck

That's what I was thinking too because those trucks see so many miles. I think its a start though, and like you Tyler, my buddy works and drives for FedEx and covers 100,000 miles in just half a year with a few routes. We'll have to see what happens.

My friend drives a hybrid Honda Civic and can attest to gas savings as can I having owned a saturn that got 30-35mpg up till its death with 198000 miles on it. Having previously owned a supercharged Xterra and a Dodge Ram, I still can feel the pinch of high gas prices.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-23-2006, 11:30 AM
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Re: Hybrid UPS delivery truck

Yeah I am spoiled with conservative cars. My first one was a 1993 Saturn SL2, even though it was an automatic I could still get 28-30mpg in city driving in the summer and 34-36mpg on the highway. Now with a 3i getting 29.8mpg as my worst ever milage and about 36mpg in mixed summer driving I feel fairly good about it.

I would bet that switching just delivery trucks over to a system that could save 50% of the used fuel could easily net in a decent percentage of fuel use being reduced (I am not talking 10-20% of used, I am talking like .1-.2%) in the US. It could also save a lot in the long run for delivery companies. Now if they can come up with a similar system for semi-trucks and buses I am sure you could see REAL fuel savings like 1-2%, probably more like 3-4% if you take that as simply diesal used in the US could be saved...suposing a 50% increase in fuel economy.

The 2 big users and polluters out there right now however are jets and cargo ships. A normal sized cruise ship puts out as much NOx emissions in the usual hour it takes to arrive or leave from port as 100,000 cars do in that same hour. That is friggen HUGE! Same with jets, terrible poullters and neither are very efficient. Boeing, GE, etc are working on jet fuel economy and are actually making some decent strides (Ala the new 787), though there is still a long way to go. Cargo ships and other ships can only have so much done, but I am sure there are still ways to make them more efficient (at the very least with emissions if not consumption).

Anyway, my 2cents, but I think this is deffinitely a step in the right direction both consumption/emissions wise and also for saving money (heck if it is costing less to deliver things that maybe down the road I won't have to pay as much shipping on stuff I buy).
-Matt
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-23-2006, 11:35 AM
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Re: Hybrid UPS delivery truck

[quote author=azazel1024 link=topic=49630.msg782750#msg782750 date=1151076624]
(heck if it is costing less to deliver things that maybe down the road I won't have to pay as much shipping on stuff I buy).
-Matt
[/quote]
That is a nice thought.. Highly doubt prices would go down. Your better off investing... UPS costs decrease mean more profits for company then TA DA high yield on stock.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-23-2006, 11:43 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Hybrid UPS delivery truck

LeeLee is correct and if this goes mainstream for UPS you have maintanance costs that could ride up for them too.


Nice thought though, it wouldn't hurt.

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 06-23-2006, 04:07 PM
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Re: Hybrid UPS delivery truck

Currently both airlines and delivery companies charge you a fuel surcharge on airfare and deliveries. I can almost guarantee if that the price of gas/diesal went down or they were suddenly using much less that if they didn't then reduce the surcharges (at least after a bit) they would be slapped with law suits (and rightly so). It is one thing to have higher charges, it is another to specifically add a surcharge for fuel...when they suddenly use less/it costs less.
-Matt
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