In Diesel News this week we have Unacceptable Trucks, Angry Drivers and Autonomous Testing, as well as, alternative fuel corridors, hybrid power and fuel choices.
In the US, businessman and entrepreneur Denis Sverdlov introduced a new electric truck, in development by automotive technology company, Charge.
“We find trucks today totally unacceptable,” said Sverdlov, according to reports. “At Charge we are making trucks the way they should be, affordable, elegant, quiet, clean and safe. We are removing all the barriers to entry for electric vehicles by pricing them in line with conventional trucks, giving every fleet manager, tradesman or company, no matter how big or small, the opportunity to change the way they transport goods and make our towns and cities better places to live in.”
Meanwhile, Colorado has been talking about how it allowed an Otto truck to run across the state loaded with Budweiser beer.
“Our protocol was that the truck had to make this trip eight times with a driver [in the cab] without the driver taking over before we would allow the computer to drive the whole route [with the driver in the sleeper compartment],” said Shailen Bhatt, Colorado’s Transportation Chief, in an interview with Trucks.com. “We made sure the roadway was swept of debris, and we got our tow trucks involved to make sure there weren’t any abandoned vehicles on the side of the road that would hamper the test.”
Hyundai Motor UK has commissioned a study which has shown women drivers as being 12 per cent angrier than men, when they’re behind the wheel.
Driving was said to have sparked ancient ‘defence’ instincts from when humans were hunter-gatherers. These evolutionary traits kicked in during the test when women were either overtaken on the inside, shouted or beeped at, had to deal with a back-seat driver (women 14 per cent angrier) or were faced with a road user who failed to indicate (women 13 per cent angrier).
Behavioural psychologists from Goldsmiths University in London, ‘sense tested’ 1,000 drivers to see how sound, sight, smell, touch and taste provoke emotional responses in different driving scenarios. The study found there are two dominant emotions: happiness, intrinsically linked to a sense of freedom when driving, and anger when drivers feel out of control.
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration has announced 55 routes as ‘alternative fuel’ corridors spanning 35 states and a length of 85,000 miles (136,000 km). Alternative refuelling facilities, like electric, hydrogen, LPG and natural gas will be prioritised along these routes.
Cummins has been showing two of the plug-in hybrid projects in which the engine manufacturer is involved.
A partnership with the Ohio State University, Paccar, NREL and Argonne National Laboratory and funded with US $4.5 million from the US Government is planned to develop a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle with a 50 per cent reduction in energy use. Cummins are looking for the engine to use as an electric vehicle range extender, using the engine to manage the charge level of the all-electric drive battery pack. Another project in Canada is developing two different models of a plug-in hybrid bus, using different battery chemistries and charging schemes.