Doubts persist about alternative fuels in the trucking industry, survey finds
Concerns with energy technologies include infrastructure, cost and reliability.
Both doubts and optimism about alternative fuels and technologies for the trucking industry were expressed by attendees in an informal survey conducted by Hyliion at the recent Advanced Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo in Long Beach, CA. Hyliion had Expo attendees answer an anonymous survey on iPads in front of the convention facility, as well as in the Hyliion booth.
When asked to evaluate industry trends as a whole:
- 48 percent of individuals identified all-electric vehicles as the most important trend;
- 35 percent chose the diesel hybrid electric, and;
- 17 percent chose the hydrogen fuel cell.
Concerns with other new trucking, energy technologies include infrastructure, cost and reliability
Of individuals who identified themselves with an “over the road” fleet, 50 percent of respondents chose diesel hybrid electric as the “most important green trucking trend for their fleet”. When asked which trends they would not adopt, respondents identified infrastructure, cost, and reliability of technology as concerns for both all-electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. Fleets indicated battery range and added weight as additional concerns for all-electric vehicles in an over the road application.
“The transportation industry’s evolution to a greener business is complex. Power requirements, infrastructure availability, range anxiety and evolving city regulations are just a few of the considerations in the evaluation of alternative fuel options being offered today. As with most technologies, the key to success is matching the right tool or technology to the situation. Regional trucking requirements are quite different than long haul. The results from our recent survey show solid interest in integrating alternative fuel sources into their fleets within a year (almost 30 percent) and 50 percent within two years.
“While there was a lot of excitement about a pure electric long haul solution, most of the individuals see utility distribution and technology issues delaying that reality for some time, ” said Thomas Healy, Hyliion founder and CEO.