Feds invest $1.7M in FPInnovations to develop hybrid forestry trucks
By Ellen Cools
The government of Canada is investing $1.7 million in FPInnovations to develop and demonstrate hybrid diesel-electric forestry trucks to help develop green transportation in forestry.
The funds will help FPInnovations retrofit two conventional forestry tractor-trailers into hybrid tractor-trailers, by equipping the two trailers with electric drive axels that will help the diesel-powered trucks. This will reduce fuel consumption and improve the trucks’ traction on challenging terrain.
The hybrid prototypes will be tested in real-world conditions in B.C. and Quebec, including on steep slopes, over long distances and challenging road conditions.
According to a government press release, transportation costs account for more than 50 per cent of forestry production costs in Canada – 30 per cent of that is from fuel costs. Hybrid solutions will help reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and fuel usage.
Simulations of the hybrid vehicles have shown fuel consumption can be reduced by up to 15 per cent, which would reduce GHG emissions by 40 tonnes per truck per year.
Other partners, including B.C.’s Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resources Operations and Rural Development, TYCROP Trailers, Deloupe, LTS Marine, Arrow Transportation Systems, Boisaco, Dana TM4, Grayson Thermal Systems, Hendrickson, Mack Ste-Foy, Meritor, Michelin, PMG Technologies, Promark Electronics and Star Express are also contributing to the project. Total investment in the initiative is over $2.4 million.