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Exelon companies test hybrid bucket trucks.

Fleet Equipment, 6/1/2005

Exelon Corp. companies Commonwealth Edison of Chicago and PECO Energy of Philadelphia will be among the first utilities in the nation to test two new hybrid bucket trucks manufactured by International Truck and Engine Corp. and Eaton Corp.

The diesel-electric hybrid trucks are expected to improve fuel economy up to 60 percent compared to existing diesel-only fueled trucks and offer emissions reductions as well as other environmental benefits. Also, the truck's ability to reduce the length of power outages will be tested. The vehicle can supply 25 kilowatts of electricity--enough power for more than a dozen homes--while crews investigate an outage.

The new hybrid truck allows the operator to shut off the diesel engine and operate the bucket on an electric motor for up to two hours before the engine has to be turned on to charge the battery pack.

The new diesel-electric hybrid is part of a program administered by WestStart, a consortium of truck fleet users, truck makers, technology companies and the military. International and Eaton were selected to manufacture the diesel-electric trucks for the national pilot program. ComEd and PECO will assist in data collection to be used in the future production of the vehicles.

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