The other day I was watching Field of Dreams (for the very first time) and there was a scene depicting a MBTA electric powered bus fed by an overhead catenary system. It was moving slow and shooting off sparks while generally looking ancient. Imagine my surprise today when I came across this press release depicting an electric powered Mack Granite and International Prostar working the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.
Siemens working in conjunction with the South Coast Air Quality Management District have completed the first electric highway in the United States. The one mile stretch of road is piloted by three trucks equipped with an overhead catenary system that can raise and lower at will allowing trucks to change lanes to avoid slower moving traffic. When not attached to the overhead lines power is supplied through onboard batteries or even CNG systems.
In heavily congested areas with high truck traffic an eHighway could be a viable way to reduce truck related emissions. Click here to read the entire article. Below, some B-Roll footage of the system in action.