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US DOE announces $187 million in grants to improve vehicle efficiency

12 January 2010

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced the selection of nine projects totaling $187 million to improve fuel efficiency for heavy-duty trucks and passenger vehicles. The funding includes more than $100 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. With a private cost share of 50%, it will support nearly $375 million in total research, development and demonstration projects.

Currently, the transportation sector accounts for 28% of total US energy use. As the new vehicle technologies are broadly adopted, they could save more than 100 million gallons of gasoline and diesel per day, and reduce carbon emissions from on-road vehicles by 20% by 2030, said the DOE.

Three projects will focus on measures to improve the efficiency of Class 8 long-haul freight trucks by 50% (SuperTrucks). These projects will receive $115 million in funding to develop and demonstrate systems-level fuel efficiency technologies by 2015, including improved aerodynamics, reducing engine idling technologies, waste heat recovery to increase engine efficiency, advanced combustion techniques, and powertrain hybridization. The awards in the SuperTrucks topic area include:

The remaining six projects totaling $71 million will support efforts to increase the fuel economy for passenger vehicle engines and powertrain systems. The goal is to develop engine technologies that will improve the fuel economy of passenger vehicles by 25-40% by 2015 using an engine-only approach. The awards in the topic area of advanced technology powertrains for light-duty vehicles (ATP-LD) are:

Source: US DOE