Geodis has joined a consortium of French companies to commission a study on electric highways from the low-carbon consultancy firm Carbone 4.
The study focuses on the possibility of implementing a fleet of hybrid heavy goods vehicles powered by a continuous supply of electricity made available over the entire length of the highway.
The electricity distribution system would be installed along the inner lane of the highway, which would remain open to other vehicles, notably conventional heavy goods vehicles.
The hybrid truck design would allow for use of an electric motor on the highway and a traditional internal combustion engine for manoeuvring (overtaking, entering and exiting highways) and non-highway travel.
The study confirms that on some highly trafficked routes and for transport companies using a single route the electric highway is a profitable option given current market conditions. Public financial support of €3 billion would serve to achieve profitability faster by generating positive environmental externalities (with a significant 30 MtCO2 reduction in transport-generated CO2 emissions) and a beneficial macroeconomic effect.
Geodis innovation director Philippe de Carné: “The search for alternatives to diesel and the reduction of the environmental impacts of dangerous emissions is one of our main research aims at Geodis. This is why we sought to initiate this study.”