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Kenworth Hybrids for New York City

February 9, 2013 in Hybrids by Rich Piellisch  |  No Comments

Sanitation, Parks and DoT Are Saving on Fuel, Cutting CO2

Kenworth has released an informative summary of New York City’s use of hybrid electric trucks with parallel drives from Eaton, reporting that the New York City Department of Sanitation, the Parks Department, and the Department of Transportation all have Kenworth hybrids. “It’s the city that never sleeps,” states a release, and “turns others green with envy.”

The New York City Department of Sanitation has 14 Kenworth T370 hybrids, and is enjoying fuel economy gains of up to 30%.

The New York City Department of Sanitation has 14 Kenworth T370 hybrids, and is enjoying fuel economy gains of up to 30%.

The Sanitation department began running hybrid Kenworth T370s in 2009, and now has nine as rack trucks, delivering parts to five borough repair shops, Kenworth reports. Five other Kenworth T370 hybrids are used as delivery trucks – shuttling tires to different service locations.

According to Spiro Kattan, supervisor of mechanics for the New York City Department of Sanitation, the city has been a forward thinker in the use of hybrid vehicles and trucks since their inception.

Stepping Up

“We get to use and test cutting-edge technology,” Kattan says in the Kenworth release. “We’ll also be the pilot test bed for many vehicles. This allows us to prove out technology and see first hand what will work best for the city. Rocco DiRico (the department’s deputy commissioner of support services) has been a driving force, challenging manufacturers,” Kattan said. “Those manufacturers, including Kenworth, have stepped up to the challenge.”

The Kenworth T370 hybrids, purchased through Gabrielli Kenworth, are powered by Paccar PX-6 engines rated at 240-horsepower and 560 foot-pounds of torque, with Eaton hybrid drive. The system uses an integral transmission-mounted motor/generator; frame-mounted 340-volt, lithium-ion battery pack; and dedicated power management system. “Electricity generated through regenerative braking is stored and used for acceleration, assisting the diesel engine,” Kenworth says. “The hybrid system is monitored through an in-dash display. As the power requirements for different driving conditions change, the screen constantly updates the driver on system status.”

“We’re seeing up to a 30% improvement in fuel economy over non-hybrid delivery trucks,” Kattan said. “The cost of maintenance is pretty close to what we have with our other trucks.

“We, of course, paid a premium for the hybrids, but they are paying us back by lowering our fuel consumption. And, that also goes into lowering our carbon footprint.”

Meeting the Mayor’s Mandate

Also according to Kattan in the Kenworth release, lowering emissions is the biggest benefit to New York. He cites a 2007 mandate from Mayor Michael Bloomberg to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 30% by 2017. “We’re on track to do just that,” he said. “Our fleet of passenger cars and light trucks/SUVs are nearly 40% hybrid. And we’re looking into hybrid-electric technology for our street sweepers – joining our rear loaders (garbage trucks). As for our medium-duty fleet, we’ve been using Kenworth hybrids in applications where stop-and-go work is necessary. That’s been the best application to get better fuel economy.”

(The New York City Department of Sanitation operates hybrid trucks from other manufacturers too, including hydraulic hybrids; and also has compressed natural gas vehicles; F&F, December 21 and July 89, 2012.)

The New York City Parks Department has 17 Kenworth T370 hybrids.

The New York City Parks Department has 17 Kenworth T370 hybrids.

Within NYC Parks, 74% of its vehicles are on some sort of alternative fuel, Kenworth says. “We’re running biodiesel, have some equipment that is solar-powered, and we’re using 17 Kenworth T370 hybrids – eight have rack bodies with lift gates, and the rest feature 5-yard dump bodies,” said Jonathan Ells, chief of staff for citywide operations.

Parks and DoT

New York City has the largest parks department in the country, Kenworth says, with more than 29,000 acres divided among 1,700 parks, and more than 500 ball fields. The hybrid dump trucks haul dirt, sand and clay to ball fields and are used for general assignment work. The T370s with rack bodies are do-all vehicles and support a wide range of park activities – from skilled trades to general maintenance.

For the New York City Department of Transportation, nine Kenworth T270 hybrid aerial bucket trucks are in service, and a T370 hybrid is on order to hoist a 60-foot bucket.

“In our department, all but one of the Kenworth hybrids are configured as 35-foot working height bucket trucks – five are used to hang signs around the city, while the others are used for painting overpasses, inspecting small bridges, and for electrical repairs,” said Dan Malone, with NYCDoT’s fleet services office.

It’ll Be Working on the Railroad

“What’s nice is once the truck is shut off, the bucket is driven by the electric PTO. That means no noise, so our employees no longer have to yell over one another at the job site. Plus, the worker in the bucket is no longer inhaling engine fumes. It’s made a huge difference to our operators. And, we’re saving fuel. All told, we’re expecting our hybrid trucks to pass 30% in fuel savings over our non-hybrids.”

According to Malone, the new T370 hybrid will go into service with rail gear. “We think it will be the first hybrid in the country to run on railroad tracks. The 60-foot boom will allow us to inspect bridges over railroads.”

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Source: Kenworth release with Fleets & Fuels follow-up

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