Ohio State teams with PACCAR to put cleaner trucks on America’s roads

Posted: November 4, 2021
semi trucks

Vice President Kamala Harris along with U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm recently announced that the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) will be providing nearly $200M in funding to 25 different projects aimed at putting cleaner cars and trucks on America’s roads, including long-haul trucks powered by batteries and fuel cells, and at improving the nation’s electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

“As America’s solutions department, DOE is working with manufacturers and industry partners to reimagine vehicle transportation across the country to achieve our climate goals—from lowering carbon emissions to increasing efficiency and affordability,” said Granholm. “This investment and the innovations that come from it will help shape our clean energy future and strengthen domestic manufacturing that support good-paying careers for hardworking Americans.” 

Part of that funding will go to the SuperTruck initiative. Now on its third iteration, the SuperTruck initiative aims to make heavy-duty, long-haul trucks more efficient. SuperTruck 3 will work to improve medium- and heavy-duty truck efficiencies and reduce emissions of freight transportation.

According to the DOE, SuperTruck 3 will fund five heavy vehicles manufacturers (PACCAR, Volvo Group North America LLC, Daimler Trucks North America, LLC, Ford Motor Company and General Motors LLC) with a combined $127 million over five years, to pioneer electrified medium- and heavy-duty trucks and freight system concepts to achieve higher efficiency and zero emissions. 

The Ohio State University is serving as the primary research university supporting the PACCAR team which is tasked with developing eighteen Class-8 battery electric and fuel cell vehicles with advanced batteries along with a megawatt charging station which will be developed and demonstrated. Ohio State’s Center for Automotive Research will focus on energy analysis of the truck and fleet data using combination of model-based and ML/AI techniques. 

“This project provides the Ohio State team with an excellent opportunity to learn and interact with leading OEM and solution providers for future (super) fleets of electrified, connected and autonomous trucks,” said research associate professor, Qadeer Ahmed who is leading the Ohio State portion of the project.   

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