Hybrid diesel-electric equipment
As there has been an increased uptake of the higher emission standard 'Tier 4' engines across the US in 2014 the electric-diesel revolution is just getting started and the new equipment is being made availabe globally. The diesel-electric hybrid equipment allows you to run with a slightly smaller engine at a lower RPM, this directly translates into fuel savings, lower NOx and PM emissions and longer engine life.
Electric drive systems have an infinitely variable power band. Some proponents of the diesel-electric earthmoving equipment are also promising that, with all the surplus electric power being generated, they may be able to do away with alternators and electrify components that normally hang off the serpentine belt such as lube, air conditioning and water pumps, therefore greatly reducing parasitic loads. It has even been suggested that it might be possible to drive hydraulic implements with hybrid electricity instead of flywheel powered hydraulic fluid one day.
Further advantages of using diesel electric hybrids is the time saved on site having to track the vehicle back to fuel tanks to recharge as well as significant engine noise reductions.
This technology is still in its early days and the fuels savings, which will be a driver behind sales, and emission reductions in real-world operation are still being evaluated. A fuel saving of up to 28% and reduction in emissions of up to 90% compared with conventional equipment has been reported. Some tests found these to be significantly less when tested in comparison with the latest non-hybrid equipment with new engine technology and tail-pipe scrubbers and these are not representative of many of the older diesel equipment commonly in use today.
Both hybrid diesel construction equipment and new conventional construction equipment are much cleaner than old diesel equipment. The drawback is that the hybrids cost 20 per cent more than conventional new equipment