Siemens is currently testing a solution to adapt trucks at a railway or tram technology. Heavy goods vehicles will be fitted with a newly developed pantograph that can transfer electric power to these hybrid power trains. On the other hand energy recovered from regenerative braking can fed back the electric system to be reused by other electric vehicles.
This concept called eHighway was announced by Siemens recently at the 26th Annual Electric Vehicle Symposium in Los Angeles. Test electric vehicles have also retro fitted with diesel electric power trains where they are always powered by an efficient electric motor and when in diesel mode, the vehicle’s engine powers a generator which in turn drives a downstream motor and turns the cardan shaft.
When travelling under eHighway electric power, the hybrid vehicle is driven only by the electric motor. Siemens assure us that the driver isn’t aware of the transitions between different drive modes.
Test trials in Germany confirm the full performance potential in each weather condition and also to load conditions. This concept of eHighway proves the flexibility and manoeuvrability of the system an important reduction in carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide, soot and noise pollution besides of fuel efficiency benefits.
A good flow of the traffic is all right at a speed up to 90 km/hour and under a direct transmission of the electric power. Next level of the project would be the expansion to inner city roads (as the trams routes).