Electric School Bus U.S. Market Study and Buyer’s Guide: A Resource for School Bus Operators Pursuing Fleet Electrification
This publication is intended to serve as a resource primarily for school districts and transportation directors exploring school bus electrification and provide them with a better understanding of the state of the electric school bus market and available offerings. It aims to present the growing interest and investment in the sector along with key aspects of the current technology. A scan of the market explores the growing demand for these buses and how manufacturers are positioning themselves to meet that demand. The catalog presents electric school bus models available today with detailed vehicle specifications allowing readers to compare various models and weigh important considerations.
School districts across the United States have started the transition to electric school buses (ESBs). As of March 2022, 415 districts (or private fleet operators) had committed to the use of 12,275 ESBs across 38 states and a range of operating conditions. States and municipalities are setting electrification goals while manufacturers scale production.
Compared to the typical school bus that runs on diesel fuel, ESBs have the potential to lower operation and maintenance costs for fleets and have zero tailpipe emissions. Their large batteries can store and deliver energy using “vehicle-to-everything” technology, to power buildings and other devices, which can support greater resiliency including through the integration of renewable energy. ESBs also have the potential to generate revenue by discharging energy from their batteries back onto the grid, lowering utility costs and emissions. Though this is a nascent market, technological advancements are due to make this widely available in the near future.
Currently, 22 ESB models are available from 12 manufacturers for Type A, C and D buses: 14 newly manufactured vehicle models and eight repowered vehicle models. There is the largest selection of Type A models. Type C models are the most commercially ready.
Each generation of buses is more advanced than the previous: many manufacturers are on their second or third iteration, some even further along. The newest models possess a battery range to serve more than 99% of routes in the U.S. (School Transportation News 2021a).
Momentum around electric school buses (ESBs) is growing in the United States as school districts across the country transition to this cleaner and healthier technology, bolstered by an upcoming infusion of new funding from the federal government. The ESB transition will require a coordinated effort among numerous entities, including school district leadership and staff; school bus manufacturers and contractors; utilities; policy makers; regulators; local advocacy organizations; and community members.
This publication is intended to serve as a resource primarily for school districts, transportation directors, and other school bus operators exploring school bus electrification to provide a better understanding of the state of the ESB market and available offerings. It aims to present the growing interest and investment in this sector along with key aspects of the current technology. In the “Status of the Electric School Bus Market” section, we explore the growing demand for these buses and how manufacturers are positioning themselves to meet that demand through a scan of the market. Next, in “Bus Basics,” we explain key components of an ESB and discuss the charging and related infrastructure that is needed to support these buses. The core element of the publication presents a catalog of the 22 ESB models available as of early 2022 with detailed vehicle specifications allowing readers to compare various models and weigh important considerations. We conclude by summarizing the status of school bus electrification to date.
Approach and Methodology
The content of this publication has been gathered from a variety of sources, compiling information on models available in the U.S. from publicly available vehicle specifications sheets confirmed through discussions with bus manufacturers when possible.
We explore school district experiences with ESBs representing a variety of use cases in the U.S. – rural, suburban and urban; warm and cold weather, including extreme temperatures; and early adopters further along in their process as well as those in earlier stages of procurement. We compiled recent research and reporting on school district commitments and experiences and supplemented public information with conversations with school districts and other partners. We plan to update this publication annually as new vehicles come to market and existing models are altered.
This resource is one of many from WRI’s Electric School Bus Initiative and is intended to be updated to expand upon topics like funding and financing, alternative service models and utility engagement.
Download the full report at World Resources Institute published on June 10, 2022.
AUSTRALIA’S sole volume electric truck maker, SEA Electric, has partnered with NTI Truck Assist to give national support to its growing list of SEA owners and operators.
It gives owners 24/7 coverage and support through metro and regional areas and reinforces the expansion of SEA truck sales and the growing acceptance of EVs used for commercial delivery and haulage.
SEA Electric president for Asia Pacific, Bill Gillespie, told GoAutoNews Premium that his company has “normalised the process for companies to convert to all-electric fleets”.
“Our ties with NTI provides SEA Electric customers with the confidence that a specialist truck call centre is supporting their investment around the clock,” he said.
The assistance program is national and is for the life of the SEA Electric vehicle’s warranty period of three years or 150,000km.
“Primarily, it’s about building a better customer outcome,” Mr Gillespie said.
“Having a call centre of NTI’s calibre means our customers are talking 24/7 to experienced people who can solve any problems with the vehicle.
“NTI CEO Tony Clark said his company really wanted to be part of this program and get onboard with the zero-emission transport world.”
Mr Gillespie said NTI has recovery vehicles throughout Australia.
“They can do a systems check – with high voltage tests – or basic systems check on the vehicle,” he said.
“If they can’t get the truck operating again then it would be on the tilt tray straight back to the dealer.
“Primarily they’re operating within the range of a dealership.”
He said there aren’t trucks operating between regional centres at the moment but the NTI partnership ensures support for trucks in rural areas.
Mr Gillespie said SEA Electric – which uses Hino trucks as the basis for its all-EV, self-branded models – had orders for about 200 trucks that were now being built.
Trucks operating are in local government authorities, private operators and large corporate fleets, with trials being undertaken by corporations including Woolworths in Sydney and Melbourne, and Ikea.
“We have trucks in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria and more recently, some sales in Tasmania,” he said.
“We have dealers in every part of Australia – two each in Sydney and Melbourne, throughout Tasmania, one in Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, plus one on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast – and regional centres such as Wodonga and Cairns. So we have coverage.
“We are targeting major metropolitan areas but we also have strong interest from local governments in suburbs and in regions. There is no shortage of demand and interest in EVs for commercial applications.”
He said local governments had been enthusiastic about the electric truck.
“A lot of councils have a desire to lower their carbon footprint,” he said.
“Australia has 537 councils and we have already sold to about 10 councils. There’s a really big opportunity in Australia for electric trucks in delivery routes.
“As an example, we also have two small home delivery, refrigerated trucks on trial in Sydney and Melbourne,” he said.
“It is a world-first to run full electric, refrigerated trucks. We are also in discussions with other companies, including Coles and Toll.”
Mr Gillespie said that there are no government incentives, at the moment, for individuals and corporations to move to electric trucks.
“We’ve been lobbying state and federal governments – the state governments in Queensland and Victoria particularly – and have had discussions about the possibility of offering tax incentives for companies to choose zero-emission vehicles,” he said.
“There’s a range of things that governments can do but up to this point there’s been no money on the table for companies wishing to choose a zero-emission alternative. So we’re still working with the government.”
Mr Gillespie said SA Electric has 15 dealers in Australia who are sales, service and parts outlets, and then other Hino dealers will in time become parts and service back-up dealers.
“There are nearly 50 dealers around Australia that will be able to handle backup and support for the trucks and we’re probably six months away from having that in place,” he said.
“We’re also looking at up to five service people in each state. The truck is serviced by the dealer and the warranty handled by the dealer. If the warranty work is related to the truck, it goes to Hino. If it’s electrical, we take care of that.”
Mr Gillespie said SEA Electric was now working with the network in high-voltage training.
Asked about SEA Electric’s future plans, Mr Gillespie said the company had no plans to move to hydrogen fuel-cell units as a propulsion system for long-distance trucks.
“I don’t think that battery electric is going to be the way to go for long distance work at this point,” he said.
“I know that there are long-range electric highways being built – for example, in Queensland – and that in time, with fast charging and enough energy in these areas, EVs can have the ability for long distances.
“But Australia sells about 22,000 light and medium-duty trucks each year. That means what we are selling at the moment doesn’t even scratch the surface. Even if we make 1000 electric trucks in Australia, where we’re a mile away from having to worry about the long-distance truck segment.
“So we’re very aware of the huge opportunities available to us in the urban, metro and regional markets. We have enough activity thre without thinking about long-distance trucks.”
Continue reading the full article at Go Auto Premium by Neil Dowling published on June 12, 2022.
USA – Sea Electric Holdings Pty Ltd, based in Los Angeles, California, showcased a Class 6 EV stripped chassis at the ACT Expo in Long Beach. Named the SV6, the firm states that the chassis is suitable for all urban applications up to a GVWR of 22,000lbs (9,980kg).
Featuring the company’s proprietary SEA-Drive 120b system, the chassis outputs 335bhp and 2,580lb-ft of torque. Fitted with a 138kWh battery pack, an unladen vehicle can expect a range of 170 miles (270km).
The firm states that due to the medium-voltage architecture of the SEA-Drive system, there is no requirement for active thermal management of the batteries. As a result, the firm claims that its solution is the lightest, most cost-affective, and most efficient system available in the last-mile delivery segment. Durability testing for the chassis is set to commence in Q3 2022, with series production expected to begin in Q1 2023. Conditional orders are currently being taken.
Speaking to Truck & Bus Builder, Tony Fairweather, CEO and Founder of SEA Electric said:
The chassis is a product that can be scaled up and down, but it is primarily intended for the North American step van market. We also intend to homologate it to R100/03 standards so that it is compliant with European regulations. As much as this product is already suitable for Europe, we are looking at a 7.5 tonne variant (Class 4), and some of our customers are already aware that we have intentions to produce an SV5 and SV4 chassis.
Expanding on the company’s plans for Europe, Fairweather added:
Europe is on the horizon, we have already set up wholly owned subsidiaries in the UK, and in Vienna, Austria, with our first employees on the ground and our first product under development. We also have had a product operating in South Africa with Isuzu since before Covid and that has been progressing really well. Also, we have launched our
first Toyota-based product in Indonesia.
Tony Fairweather, CEO of SEA Electric, speaking at the ACT Expo
Responding to the launch of competing products in this segment, such as the chassis unveiled by Blue Bird Corp at ACT Expo, Fairweather said:
The main point of difference between our product and its competition is that we have a proven platform that has operated with UPS for three years and has been validated by them. Tested in some of the harshest environments in the US, our products ran through cold winters in Michigan and through summer trials in Arizona. As a result, we’re able to operate in -20°C (-4°F) to 60° C (140°F). Anyone else showing a chassis on the ground right now has not been through the rigorous testing that we have put our products through.
SEA Electric was initially founded in Australia in 2012, before moving its headquarters to Los Angeles to focus on offering its products to the much larger North American market. Commenting on this shift in strategy, Fairweather said:
Developing and establishing technology in Australia, with zero incentives back then, meant that we had to think outside of the box in terms of creativity. Customers in this space want three outcomes: the lowest cost solution, the lightest weight solution, and the most miles per kilowatt hour. Not having incentives in Australia at the time meant we had to take that into consideration during development. A few other companies that were early to this space, based in California, took advantage of schemes like HVIP and it has not done them any favours in terms of what they have created. They’re developing higher voltage, heavier, and costlier solutions which has impacted heavily in those three categories. Now, Australia has more incentives and we’re expanding there as well as in New Zealand. What I wanted to do before relocating to the US was ensuring we had an excellent, proven product with high-mileage testing completed. As an outsider coming to the US, if you arrive here saying you’re the bee’s knees without any proof of it, they’ll squash you pretty quickly – we’ve come here with a million miles of testing, we were active in four countries before coming here.
On funding, Fairweather said:
California and the East Coast in the US are doing a great job in terms of funding. However, governments cannot incentivise too much to support the electrification of diesel vehicles in this space. The middle of America really needs to catch up and there needs to be more consistency and standardisation across individual states and countries.
Continue reading the full article at Truck and Bus Builder by Will Hall published on June 7, 2022.
Electric vehicle start up, SEA Electric has announced it has strengthened its strategic partnership with specialist insurer NTI’s Truck Assist Roadside assistance service with the company also managing a 24/7 call centre for the OEM, along with also offering insurance options for operators in the EV space.
SEA Electric says that gaining the support of NTI further eases the customer transition into the zero-emissions transport world.
“By manufacturing the world’s first true range of electric trucks in Melbourne, and supporting them via an extensive nationwide sales and service network, SEA Electric has normalised the process for companies to convert to all-electric fleets,” said SEA Electric president for the Asia Pacific Region, Bill Gillespie.
“The next logical step was to strengthen our ties with NTI via this suite of initiatives and provide SEA Electric customers with the confidence that a specialist truck call centre is supporting their investment around the clock.
“All new SEA Electric trucks also operate with the backing of NTI’s Truck Assist Roadside assistance for the life of the SEA Electric vehicle’s warranty period of three years or 150,000km.
“Supporting SEA Electric customers by having expert help at hand if ever required, further adds to our operator’s peace of mind.”
For truck owners across the country, Truck Assist has grown a reputation as a dependable partner that keeps businesses moving, with its insurance policy offering designed to meet the needs of electric truck owners.
As Australia’s number one heavy vehicle insurance and roadside assistance provider, we are committed to providing SEA Electric truck owners a comprehensive product and service that is handled with expertise and care, every step of the way,” said Alan Hasted, general manager, Truck Assist.
“We’ve taken a hands-on approach to understanding how EVs work and knowing what customers need – from understanding the technology, to how they are manufactured, and ensuring that our operators are equipped to offer 24/7 specialist roadside support.
As a truck specialist we’re here to support operators to need to maintain fleet uptime whilst being conscious of environmental impacts, and seeking long-term economical options for their business.”
The 24/7 SEA Connect phone service is available to SEA Electric owners via 1800 SEA EVS (1800 732 387).
Continue reading the full article at Truck and Bus News by Jon Thomson published on June 7, 2022.
The Australian founder of a successful electric vehicle technology company says he is hopeful the 47th parliament will finally give the local sector the backing it needs to scale, after he felt forced to move to the United States.
Tony Fairweather, the chief executive and founder of SEA Electric, which has grown rapidly to be worth almost $US1 billion ($1.4 billion), said he was relieved to see a change in government, saying the hostile Coalition attitude towards EVs forced him to move offshore five years ago to grow his business.
Speaking to The Australian Financial Review from his base in Miami, Mr Fairweather said he was hopeful the change in national leadership – along with the slew of climate-focused independents and Greens sitting on the crossbench – would lead to government interventions that would enable him to expand manufacturing facilities back home in Melbourne, while encouraging more Australian companies to manufacture the components needed for electric vehicle systems.
“For the first time I’m actually excited about what the next few years will bring in the climate change space and in the electric vehicle space,” Mr Fairweather said.
“I’ve been very, very disappointed to be in this industry in Australia up until now.
“Electrification has not only not been acknowledged, it’s actually been mocked in government over the last couple of years.”
In late 2021, former prime minister Scott Morrison backtracked on his claim that EVs would “end the weekend” as they were incapable of towing trailers, boats or reaching a family’s favourite camping spot.
Labor has since promised to make it cheaper to buy EVs (which will be exempt from import and fringe benefits taxes), expand charging infrastructure and develop policy settings to encourage Australian manufacturing of EV components.
SEA Electric was founded in Melbourne in 2012, and makes electric power systems for delivery vans and trucks. After five years of research and development, Mr Fairweather said he decided to leave Australia in 2017 when orders started coming in, but he couldn’t secure the funding locally to buy the necessary components.
“We needed to fund the growth of our business. We couldn’t get anything in Australia. We tried banks, we tried government support, we tried ARENA [the Australian Renewable Energy Agency] and the Clean Energy Finance Corporation,” he said.
Mr Fairweather said a big four bank gave him a small trade finance facility, which it later pulled.
“Their excuse was effectively they didn’t believe in the electrification of commercial vehicles. We were debt free, but we had no funding to grow,” he said.
“It became clear that the only way I was going to be able to raise the capital that this business needed was to come to the US, to a country that recognised electrification.
“Australia was a tough place to start an electric technology business.”
Since migrating to the US, SEA Electric has raised $US70 million, has an order bank approaching 2000 units and has struck partnerships with major OEMs.
Its electric power systems have driven more than 2.5 million kilometres.
Mr Fairweather said the new government would have numerous levers to encourage the industry in Australia, such as customer rebates and mandating that commercial fleets have a certain percentage of zero-emission vehicles.
“If the current government supports and recognises [electrification] then the banks, the capital markets and investors and new components suppliers will get on board,” he said.
Behyad Jafari, chief executive of the Electric Vehicle Council, said Mr Fairweather’s optimism was shared by the sector, who were happy to have “a more electric vehicle-friendly” government in power.
“The electric vehicle industry is certainly very enthused and excited about the change of government,” he said.
Mr Jafari said the government’s commitment to reach net zero by 2050 would provide much more certainty for clean energy and electric vehicle investors.
Continue reading the full article at The Australian Financial Review by Tess Bennett published on June 6, 2022.
Bill Gillespie, SEA Electric’s President, Asia Pacific Region has made this statement relating to the weekend’s Federal election result.
“We congratulate the new Federal Government on their election success over the weekend, and we look forward to working with them in the coming years to advance the uptake of electric vehicles across the nation,” said Mr Gillespie.
“As Australia moves towards our net zero emissions goals, it is imperative that the country embraces sustainable technology that delivers real results.
“Locally, emissions from the road transport task make up 19 per cent of the country’s total emissions, with heavy vehicles contributing 38 per cent of that total.
“Throughout the lead up to the election, the Australian Labor Party has noted several key policies, such as the Driving the Nation Fund, the National Reconstruction Fund, and the Powering Australia plan, which have the potential to be positives for EV adoption and furthering local manufacturing.
“The EV movement in Australia has a bright future, and we are excited to be at the forefront.”
SEA Electric has successfully showcased to the automotive fleet management decision-makers of Australia at the recent Australasian Fleet Management Association’s (AfMA) 2022 Fleet Conference & Exhibition.
Designed to highlight the road ahead for fleet professionals, SEA Electric exhibited a SEA 300-85 EV cab chassis and with a SEA-Drive® 100 power-system, while also sponsoring the program’s morning tea.
Amongst the 35 speakers at the conference, Bill Gillespie, SEA Electric President, Asia Pacific Region, outlined the current state of the zero-emission transport environment and the aspirations of SEA Electric as Australia’s newest commercial vehicle OEM
“The AfMA Conference was a great opportunity to engage with the key stakeholders involved in the fleet management industry,” said Mr Gillespie.
“From a SEA Electric perspective, the event underlines that the sector now has a strong understanding of the concepts behind EV technology, they are asking more technical questions, and being purchase ready, they want to know more about the acquisition process.
“Even with increased competition in the marketplace, SEA Electric is well positioned to capitalize on those looking to make the switch to EV, with an established, trusted national dealer network, plus a comprehensive range of cab, wheelbase, and power-system options to cover applications up to 22.5 tonnes.
“It is apparent that our high-quality vehicles, backed by millions of kilometres of real-world use, and supported by an extensive aftersales service and parts offering places SEA Electric at the forefront of the available EV truck options.”
A focus of the conference was the ever-changing technology aspects faced by the industry, from zero-emissions options to autonomous motoring, performance, and safety.
In Australia, transport emissions make up 19 per cent of the country’s total emissions, with road freight contributing to 38 per cent of that total, despite heavy vehicles only making up 4 per cent of the road vehicle fleet.
Founded in Australia in 2012, SEA Electric’s mature technology can now be found on five continents, with growth accelerating across the USA and Europe.
Continue reading the full article at Fleet Auto News published on May 23, 2022.
SEA Electric showcased its latest developments on a Class 6 SV6 EV stripped chassis at the Advanced Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo, to be held at Long Beach, California, from May 9-12, 2022, the largest clean fleet event of its type.
Founded in Australian in 2012, SEA Electric created electric power-system technology—aka SEA-Drive—as a vehicle solution provider for the world’s urban delivery and distribution fleets, as well as front powered school bus applications.
It states that its SEA-Drive power-system, leads the industry in terms of range, driving performance, weight and environmental credentials, with zero local emissions of carbon dioxide, methane or nitrous oxide.
With its medium-voltage architecture and no requirement for active thermal management of batteries, SEA Electric said its solution is the lightest, most cost-effective and most efficient system available in the battery-electric last-mile delivery segment.
“Major fleets across the country that utilize a step van platform understand that zero-emissions power-systems are now proven and the way forward,” stated Tony Fairweather, founder and Chief Executive Officer of SEA Electric.
He said: “With the SEA SV6 EV, we bring to the market a complete package that offers all of the functionality required from these vehicles, complete with a proven, reliable all-electric architecture that leads the industry.”
Fairweather offered that one of the more exciting things about the world shifting to electric vehicles, is the V2G (Vehicle-to-Grid) capabilities of the system, which he explained would form the basis of the future energy ecosystem.
“With only 100,000 SV6 EVs on the road, it would represent the equivalent of the entire battery storage capacity that is currently available across the US,” he continued. “The switch to zero emissions deliveries has environmental advantages, but importantly, provides mobile battery storage and paves the way to improved power grid security.”
Powered by the SEA-Drive 120b power-system, the SV6 EV covers applications with a GVWR (gross vehicle weight rating) up to 22,000lbs (Class 6), with its 335hp and 2,580lb-ft performance ratings ideal for any urban driving situation.
It utilizes a 138kWh battery pack for the platform, delivering a class-leading unladen range of up to 170 miles, while also capable of being configured for fast charging at up to 80kW.
The SV6 EV platform is packed with specialist innovations unique to the segment.
From all-encompassing telematics, including a smartphone app, back-end portal and integrated digital instrument cluster from Valid, to EV-specific tires with a low rolling resistance, and an angular sensor on the electric power steering system, which actively conserves power, the advancements are numerous.
The package will have the standard inclusions and optional extras comparable with any similar vehicle currently available, including driver comfort and safety items, which can be incorporated into popular body types, with various width and wheelbase options available. Examples include: Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems include; Automatic Emergency Braking, Distance Alert/Distance Indication, Post-Collision Braking, Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Departure Warning, Driver Alert System and Auto-High Beam Control
For delivery drivers, the SV6 EV provides a comfortable work environment, with health and safety considerations including no noise, fumes, heat, or vibrations, while fleets can rest assured with class-leading warranty, and with extended warranties also available.
Durability testing for the package is set to commence in Q3 2022, with volume assembly to begin in Q1 2023, with conditional orders currently being taken.
Further announcements regarding Class 3 to 5 SEA SV stripped chassis models will be made in due course.
Although founded in Australia, SEA Electric maintains its headquarters in Torrance, California, with its global engineering center in Grimes, Iowa. Its electric commercial vehicles can be found in the US, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Indonesia, and South Africa with over 1-million miles of independently OEM (original equipment manufacturer)-tested and in-service international operation.
Continue reading the full article at Service Truck Magazine by Matthew MacDonald published on May 11, 2022.
As things have started to open up after Covid-19 restrictions eased across Australia, noise pollution from trucks has been gradually on the rise. But can electrification of trucks in Australia help solve that?
I commonly hear the complaint: “Australian automotive manufacturing is gone”.
It’s true that we don’t make Holdens, Toyotas or Fords anymore, but automotive manufacturing is still alive and here in 2022. I got to see it in action recently at SEA Electric’s factory in southeast Melbourne.
Australian-made EV trucks: quiet achievers
One thing that blew me away when I test drove SEA’s trucks in April was how quiet they were off the line and how much easier it was for the drivers to get in and start driving.
The cabin was quieter and did not have the vibrations coming off a diesel engine which is always there even if the truck is stopped at a set of lights.
This eases driver fatigue which we know contributes to road toll. So these trucks are not only quieter, but they are safer on our roads too. Drivers are more aware of their surrounding traffic with less noise and vibration.
Could quieter electric trucks increase house values?
On the road, EV trucks like those made by SEA Electric produce much less noise which is better for residents of homes on main-roads across Australia.
As more and more EV trucks and cars get onto our roads, our main roads would get less noisier which could lead to an increase in house values too.
Future of EV trucks
Many of us have heard that “without trucks, Australia stops”. It’s true as road freight is such an integral part of our transport network and the way we live.
As we move towards a cleaner future and decarbonise transport, EV trucks will play a major role in that transition. This would lead to cleaner and quieter cities and if these trucks are Australian made right here like SEA Electric trucks are in Melbourne, it’ll help us quietly achieve that transition a lot quicker.
Continue reading the full article at The Driven by Riz Akhtar published on May 11, 2022.
Hybrid diesel, full electric or hydrogen? Long-haul transport’s future could still go in any direction
While many observers firmly believe that the future of long-haul trucking around the world will rely on hydrogen-powered fuel-cell technology, one Australian who is at the absolute forefront of electric trucking isn’t so sure about that.
Bill Gillespie, Asia-Pacific Regional President of Melbourne-based electric truck manufacturer, SEA Electric, told CarsGuide that we should be wary of ruling out alternative technologies in favour of a single option.
“I’m not saying we won’t see the hydrogen fuel-cell play a big part in long-haul transport,” he said, “but Hydrogen might turn out to be one part of the potential solution.”
“The big problem with any powertrain is that the heavier it is, the more compromised the payload becomes. But even that doesn’t rule out batteries of some sort playing a part.”
Replaceable batteries are one alternative, Mr Gillespie said.
In fact, NSW Central Coast-based Janus Electric is already working on a prime-mover that uses replaceable batteries based on a change-station network on major arterials.
Although still in the prototype stage, Janus claims that a battery swap will take about three minutes and would give a B-Double a range of between 400-500km on a battery-set.
But Mr Gillespie has dived even further into the alternatives, and says that a hybrid-diesel could also be a reality.
This is well-established technology and has been used to power freight trains for decades. Fundamentally, a diesel engine produces the electricity to drive the electric motors that power the train’s wheels. There’s absolutely no reason it couldn’t work for a road-train as well.
In the meantime, SEA Electric’s focus remains on the light- and medium-truck market which is primarily used for urban work where range is not as much of an issue as it is for long-haul trucks.
While these urban-based trucks tend to fly under the radar a little, when they’re counted as a group, the potential benefits of electrification start to add up.
About 21,000 medium and light trucks are sold in Australia each year, and those make up about 40 per cent of all freight deliveries.
Given that many government departments are averse to carbon-fuelled vehicles and even global giant Ikea is moving to eTruck deliveries in 30 of its markets, the scope for eTrucks – regardless of the tech they use – to blossom is huge.
Continue reading the full article at Cars Guide by David Morely published on April 13, 2022.
An electric garbage truck is being trialed on Canberra’s streets for the first time, as part of ACT government efforts to move its fleet to zero emissions vehicles.
Transport and City Services Minister Chris Steel said transport emissions accounted for more than 60 per cent of total output in ACT, so electrification was needed as soon as possible to tackle climate change.
“We’ve already kick-started this transition with 12 battery electric buses joining Transport Canberra’s fleet this year, and a further 90 e-buses on the way,” Mr Steel said in a statement.
“The government is now assessing how we can move to zero emissions trucks for waste collection in the ACT. This two-week trial will provide an understanding of the features and benefits of using zero emissions technology for heavy commercial vehicles.”
The electric garbage truck is a converted diesel model developed by Bucher Municipal and SEA Electric. It has a range of 190 kilometres and can run at a top speed of 100km/h. A full battery charge lasts eight hours.
Darren Gear, a regional sales manager at Burcher Municipal, said the truck was the cutting edge of electric vehicle technology.
“Our company believes in solving challenges with key partnerships through technology and we strive to develop new equipment that meet environmental outcomes for now and into the future,” Mr Gear said.
Continue reading the full article at Canberra Times by Jasper Lindell published on April 13, 2022.