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Test project in Hessen is expanded

The number of electric vehicles in normal road traffic has been increasing for some time. However, this does not yet apply to the transport sector. Because completely different loads have to be moved here. This in turn quickly pushes the batteries to their limits. However, long loading times are difficult to achieve in the operation of many haulage companies. That is why the idea of ​​overhead lines on the motorways arose a few years ago. Electric trucks can then use these to drive in a climate-neutral manner on the one hand, but also to charge the batteries while driving on the other. If enough kilometers of motorway were to be converted accordingly, e-trucks could largely do without charging breaks. However, there are more than 13,000 kilometers of autobahns in Germany. Providing all of them with an electrical overhead line would entail enormous costs. Experts estimate the amount required to be around 65 billion euros. Politicians have therefore decided on a multi-stage process.

Bild: Photographs by Radosław Drożdżewski (User: Zwiadowca21), CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

The trucks are already transporting goods on commercial routes

The first pilot tests are currently taking place. Only a few kilometers of the motorway were converted accordingly. This can be seen, for example, in Hessen on the A5 between Langen and Weiterstadt. An overhead line will be installed there for seven more kilometers. This in turn enables even more haulage companies to rely on hybrid trucks with a potential connection to the power grid. Because the conversion is currently still a test. However, the trucks used are fully integrated into the processes of the forwarding agents. So real goods are transported on commercial routes. The only thing is that there are fewer CO2 emissions than before. The pilot tests should then be completed and evaluated at the end of next year. However, the first interim analyzes have already come to a very positive conclusion. If this is confirmed, it is planned to then set up a basic network on routes that are particularly frequently used by trucks.

The transport sector is one of the laggards when it comes to climate protection

Experts have determined that around 4,000 kilometers of motorway with overhead lines would be sufficient to cover a significant part of the heavy haulage. Here, too, the costs are too high to enable a complete retrofit immediately. Instead, the basic network is to be established by 2030. After that, at least 30 percent of heavy goods traffic will either be electric or use so-called climate-neutral fuels. Progress in this area is urgently needed. Because the transport sector still causes about as many emissions as in 1990. Attempts by politicians to shift a larger part of freight transport to rail have failed time and again in the past. If you like, the advantages of rail should now be brought to the road. Germany is not completely alone with this idea: electrical overhead lines have already been installed over highways in Sweden.

Via: Southgerman newspaper

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