Pantograph
ID 10785741 © Adrea | Dreamstime.com

The Guardian reports today that a study into whether trucks could adopt the technology that has allowed the electrification of large parts of the rail network has shown that road freight emissions in the UK could be drastically reduced within 15 years. While electric delivery vehicles are increasingly used in urban environments, truck manufacturers have so far been unable to develop a electric batteries with enough energy storage for trucks to run for long distances. However, the interesting alternative, being tested in Germany and Sweden, is to electrify the roads themselves. “Catenary cables, powered by the national electricity grid, would link to lorries driving in the inside lanes on 4,300 miles (7,000km) of UK roads through an extendable rig known as a pantograph – similar to those on the top of electric trains. The electricity would power the lorry’s electric motor, as well as recharging an onboard battery that would power them to destinations beyond the electrified roads.”

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