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POMONA, Calif. … President Barack Obama today previewed an innovative plug-in hybrid electric utility truck with a power system developed by diversified industrial manufacturer Eaton Corporation (NYSE:ETN) and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). The President visited the Electric Vehicle Technical Center of Southern California Edison to view an array of advanced technology vehicles.
The plug-in hybrid truck, which is estimated to deliver fuel economy improvements of up to 70 percent compared to a conventionally powered truck, with corresponding reductions in harmful emissions, was developed for Southern California Edison. Eaton is in the early test phase of the plug-in system and is considering it as a potential future offering.
“Eaton is pleased to add plug-in hybrid power systems to our portfolio, in concert with EPRI and Southern California Edison at this important event attended by President Obama,” said James E. Sweetnam, president, Eaton’s Truck Group. “We salute Southern California Edison, a long-standing customer of ours, for its commitment to innovation and energy efficiency.”
The plug-in hybrid truck is the first of five “boom and bucket” trucks based on a Ford F-550 chassis that will be provided by Eaton, EPRI and Ford to public and private utility fleets in the United States for use and evaluation. In addition to fuel and emissions savings while the truck is on the road, additional energy savings are available by utilizing the electric side of the system to power the ancillary systems and tools when the truck is stopped at a work site.
The entire system can be recharged by plugging it into a standard 120- or 240-volt electrical outlet. Once charged, the battery energy can be used to supplement engine power and also provide power to operate auxiliaries, such as the utility truck boom.
Eaton is a global leader in hybrid systems for trucks and buses, accumulating more than 12 million road miles in service around the world. Eaton is the only company to offer both hybrid electric and two hydraulic hybrid system technologies. Eaton’s hybrid systems are available on truck models from International, Peterbilt, Kenworth and Freightliner.
Companies such as FedEx, UPS, Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Wal-Mart are using delivery vehicles with the Eaton system. Work trucks with Eaton hybrid power are also in service at dozens of utility and telecom companies across North America. Benefits of the existing Eaton hybrid systems include fuel economy improvement ranging from 30 to 60 percent, with similar percentages in emission reductions, extended brake life and idle time reductions of up to 87 percent during work site operations.
Last week, Eaton announced it has established a program to assist diesel truck fleet owners in applying for the $156 million in grants for diesel hybrid trucks that are available under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Under the Environmental Protection Agency’s related Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA), funding is available through ARRA for up to 25 percent of the cost of a new hybrid truck. An existing diesel truck has to be taken out of service for each new hybrid truck that is purchased. Fleets and equipment eligible for the DERA funding include buses, medium- or heavy-duty trucks, marine engines and locomotives.
Eaton Corporation is a diversified power management company with 2008 sales of $15.4 billion. Eaton is a global technology leader in electrical components and systems for power quality, distribution and control; hydraulics components, systems and services for industrial and mobile equipment; aerospace fuel, hydraulics and pneumatic systems for commercial and military use; and truck and automotive drivetrain and powertrain systems for performance, fuel economy and safety. Eaton has approximately 75,000 employees and sells products to customers in more than 150 countries. For more information, visit www.eaton.com .