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9 November 2017

Siemens launches the first eHighway demonstration in the US

Siemens has launched a one-mile zero emission eHighway pilot project in California which supplies trucks with electric power.

The pilot e-Highway, developed in collaboration with South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD), is located in Carson, California, near the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

Three big-rig trucks: one battery-electric truck, a clean natural gas hybrid electric truck and a diesel hybrid truck, will run along the stretch of the highway which provides them with electricity through an overhead line, in a similar way to how trolleys or streetcars are powered.

The system also allows the trucks to run outside the electrified sections, switching lanes and passing other vehicles through featuring an active line located on top of the eHighway trucks that transfers energy from the overhead lines to the truck’s electric motors.

 The $13.5 million project aims to reduce smog-forming, toxic and greenhouse gas emissions that affect communities leaving close to the ports and are heavily impacted by air pollution from trucks.

It is also expected to lower fossil fuel consumption, reduce truck operating costs and help accommodate the increasing demand for freight transportation. 

Wayne Nastri, SCAQMD’s Executive Officer said: “This project will help us evaluate the feasibility of a zero-emission cargo movement system using overhead catenary wires”.

“This demonstration could lead to the deployment of eHighway systems that will reduce pollution and benefit public health for residents living near the ports”.

Andreas Thon, Head of Turnkey Projects & Electrification, North America commented: “Every day, Americans rely on the goods and services that are carried by freight”.

“But with that mode of transportation predicted to double by 2050, only one-third of this additional travel can be handled by trains despite the expansion of rail infrastructure. Experts expect global CO2 emissions from road freight traffic to more than double by 2050”.

In June 2016, Siemens launched the world’s first e-Highway system on public roads in Sweden and is planning for three pilot ones in Germany in 2019.

You can see a video of how the e-Highway works here

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