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Low-emissions propulsion for long-distance trucks and coaches

Proposals will have to address all the following technical areas:

  • Sub-systems and component concepts including electro-hybrid drives, optimized ICEs and after-treatment systems for alternative and renewable fuels, electric motors, smart auxiliaries, renewable energy production and storage and power electronics, suitable for real life operation under different mission conditions;
  • Concepts for connected and digitalized fleet management, predictive maintenance and operation in relation to electrification where appropriate to maximise the emissions reduction potential;
  • Implementation of required adaptations in VECTO accordingly to facilitate early take-up of the innovations.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU between EUR 20 and 25 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Long-distance transport is a main consumer of energy and contributor to CO2 and air pollutant emissions in Europe, and requires specific attention due to very high demand on efficiency, dependability, reliability and cost. This topic considers heavy-duty trucks and bus-coaches in long-distance operation, and the challenge will be to reduce their energy consumption, CO2 ,regulated and non-regulated emissions (to anticipate future legislation and emerging issues such as extremely fine nanoparticles) through multi–technology vehicles operated on a mix of alternative and renewable fuels as well as recuperated heat and regenerated and externally supplied electricity.

  • The internal combustion engine performance shall be further enhanced to reach a peak thermal efficiency target of 50%
  • Reduction of CO2 emissions based on new ICEs optimized (where sufficiently large benefits can be demonstrated) for different combinations using alternative and renewable fuels with additional energy savings using heat recuperation or plug-in hybrid. Emissions with high global warming potential will have to be taken into account in the total CO2 equivalent emissions target and methodologies to introduce such emissions in VECTO devised accordingly.
  • A total energy saving, excluding the effect of alternative fuels and plug-in electricity, of at least 10% with respect to the best in class conventional vehicle of 2018 (according to the ongoing monitoring exercise) is targeted at calculated vehicle level VECTO results, validated by propulsion system measurements
  • 30% reduction of NOx, CO and hydrocarbons in an extended range of environmental conditions
  • Reduction of unregulated components (N02, N20, NH3, CH4 for NG powertrains, PN measured with a lower threshold of 10nm
  • Reduction of noise in environmental zones in electric modes
  • Implementation of needed simulation methodologies in VECTO.