Germany is hosting the first electric highway built for freight trucks. The freight transportation industry is one of the hardest problems to solve. This is because food and other products need to be transported. Unfortunately, an electric motor often can’t get the job done.
Instead of a pure electric vehicle, a hybrid truck will utilize overhead lines to provide electricity to the motor. This has the power to significantly reduce carbon emissions for which the trucking industry has become infamous.
How Does It Work
Freight trucks cannot be a pure electric motor. An electric motor, at this time, does not offer the power needed to haul heavy freight long distances. While this can certainly change in the future, life on this planet simply cannot wait.
Siemens has developed special equipment that must be attached to the truck’s roof. This equipment will detect overhead lines, which need to be installed on the highway, and power the electric motor.
These motors can reach speeds of 90 kilometers, or 56 miles, per hour. However, it is important to note that these trucks are not pure electric. When a truck exits the highway, they will switch to a traditional engine. Autonomous and advanced sensors make this possible.
Where Is The Highway
The entire premise behind this idea is developers will not need to build a new highway. Instead, all that is necessary are overhead lines. The Autobahn highway has a small section ready for testing. 10 kilometers, or 6.2 miles, of highway are open with these overhead lines.
What’s more important is that this stretch of highway is between the Frankfurt airport and a nearby industrial park. As freight moves commonly between these two locations, which makes it the perfect testing zone.
Thanks to the simplicity of the method, the system can be integrated with the entire highway network if tests are successful.
A Big Win For The Environment
To meet the goals of the Paris Agreement, a solution to the freight truck industry is necessary. However, due to technological restraints, pure electric trucks do not exist. Thus, the new hybrid truck is making it possible.
The Paris Agreement is signed by over 190 countries around the world. The agreement is a foundation in the effort to prevent climate change from permanently damaging the Earth. The goal is to limit the effects of global warming to a 1.5C temperature increase.
The only way this is possible is to significantly reduce carbon emissions, and trucking is one of those areas with the most room for improvement.