Odyne wins $2.9 million hybrid truck contract

Odyne Systems LLC of Waukesha has been awarded a $2.9 million contract to install its plug-in hybrid system on commercial work trucks. The project is funded by the U.S. Dept. of Energy as well as the South Coast Air Quality Management District in southern California

Odyne Systems LLC of Waukesha has been awarded a $2.9 million contract to install its plug-in hybrid system on commercial work trucks. The project is funded by the U.S. Dept. of Energy as well as the South Coast Air Quality Management District in southern California.

Through the project, Odyne will install seven hybrid power systems on bucket trucks and underground utility trucks. The project also will fund further development of Odyne’s technology and evaluate the performance of vehicles using the Odyne systems.

Odyne developed a hybrid system that can improve the fuel efficiency of trucks and reduce fuel consumption by up to 50% through reduced idling and other improvements. Utility trucks are powered by the battery rather than by the truck's engine to perform power-line maintenance tasks.

“We are excited to deploy our newest hybrid technology into the California market and look forward to working with Los Angeles County, the largest county in the U.S., and the Los Angeles Department of Public Works, the largest municipal utility in the country, who have agreed to participate in the project,” said Joe Dalum, Odyne president.

The announcement came one month after Odyne announced that Glendale, CA-based Johnson Controls Inc. had made a strategic investment in Odyne to fund its expansion.

At the same time, Odyne designated Johnson Controls-Saft as a “preferred supplier” of lithium-ion battery systems for Odyne’s plug-in hybrid system.

“Plug-in hybrid technology has the potential to provide substantial air quality benefits for the South Coast region. This demonstration will help accelerate these benefits,” according to Barry Wallerstein of the Air Quality Management District.

The Air Quality Management District is the air pollution control agency for Orange County and major portions of the Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

The district said in a description of the project that the medium- and heavy-duty truck segment “is responsible for creating a disproportionate amount of emissions in the South Coast Air Basin, since they represent a relatively small percentage of the vehicle population, but are responsible for the majority of the NOx (nitrogen oxides) and particulate matter emissions.”

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