Alcoa unit AFL Automotive and ultracapacitor supplier Maxwell Technologies showed a jointly developed cold-start system for the commercial truck market at the Mid-America Trucking Show last week. The system combines Maxwell's BOOSTCAP ultracapacitors with AFL's power management system.
"The cold-start system can lower cost of ownership for fleet owners through fuel savings, lower weight and improved packaging," said Allen Zwierzchowski, AFL senior vice president, Global Technology." (It) can be used as part of a no-idle system to start a diesel engine in cold climates and to ensure reliable starting after the truck batteries are drained overnight by hotel loads. The cold-start system, which recharges quickly from the main power system, can also be used with delivery vehicles that have repetitive starts."
After powering overnight "hotel loads" many battery systems have insufficient power to start the vehicle in the morning, especially at cold ambient temperatures. The AFL-Maxwell system is said to ensure engine starts, thus eliminating the cost and lost down time of jump starts. The cold-start system can also reduce or eliminate secondary energy storage systems used to start diesel engines from 6 liters to 16 liters in displacement. The weight savings can to lower fuel consumption or increase payload.