World-first hybrid truck technology from Adgero could help Australian road transport operators cut fuel consumption by up to 25% and reduce the trucking industry’s carbon footprint.
The French transport technology company said it has has developed the world’s first operational Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) for road transport to boost efficiency through fuel savings, extra power and reduced emissions for truck fleets.

Adgero President Mack Murray presented the UltraBoost system at the recently held ComVec, Australia’s heavy vehicle engineering conference in Melbourne. The two-day event brings together leaders from business, government and engineering and research to discuss challenges facing the industry.

The UltraBoost system consists of an electrically driven axle mounted under the semi-trailer or rigid truck body, powered by a bank of graphene ultracapacitors and controlled by intelligent management software that automatically controls regenerative braking and acceleration boost, according to the company.

During braking the UltraBoost system harnesses kinetic energy and stores it in the ultracapacitors; that power is then delivered back to the axles in the form of a power boost during acceleration. Intelligent software management ensures smooth power delivery so drivers are only aware of the difference when checking their fuel consumption, which is maximized during start-stop traffic or traversing hilly terrain, according to the company.

“The incredibly varied nature of Australia’s roads represents a huge potential for energy-saving for the road haulage industry through hybridization,” Murray said. “Take Australia’s busiest trucking route, the Hume Highway, for example: crossing the Great Dividing Range means constant braking and accelerating for truck drivers – this is all potential energy that could be harnessed to save fuel and emissions. Trucks account for the Australian transport sector’s second largest source of greenhouse gas emissions after cars and more than 95% of road freight is carried by heavy vehicles such as semi-trailers, B-doubles and rigid trucks – most of which can be retrofitted with a Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS). Trucks travelling along busy routes between capitals or in urban areas would benefit most by hybridization, but our UltraBoost system could also reduce fuel consumption for road trains, mining trucks or even port crane vehicles such as straddle carriers.”

Adgero’s UltraBoost is currently undergoing a trail with the British division of a leading international logistics company for use on its urban UK delivery routes, including Greater London.