As renewable energy becomes more cost-effective and commonplace, agencies may choose to begin replacing their winter maintenance vehicles and equipment with a fleet that has a smaller carbon footprint. There are, however, a number of issues that transportation agencies with winter maintenance programs should consider before converting an existing diesel-fueled winter maintenance fleet to one powered by electric vehicle technologies (EVT) or alternative fuels.
The goal of this project is to provide agencies that rely on diesel-powered winter maintenance fleets with a thorough understanding of the available technologies and related operational considerations that would be impacted by a transition to a fleet powered by EVT or alternative fuels.
Investigators will research EVT as well as identify what alternative fuels are viable for use in winter maintenance vehicles and heavy equipment, and a comparison of the benefits and challenges each energy source offers. This information will form the basis for a synthesis report that agencies can reference in their decision-making process.