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Well-to-wheels analysis of zero-emission plug-in battery electric vehicle technology for medium- and heavy-duty trucks


Liu, Xinyu; Elgowainy, Amgad; Vijayagopal, Ram; Wang, Michael


Conventional diesel medium- and heavy-duty vehicles (MHDVs) create large amount of air emissions. With the advancement in technology and reduction in the cost of batteries, plug-in battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are increasingly attractive options for improving energy efficiency and reducing air emissions of MHDVs. In this paper, we compared the well-to-wheels (WTW) greenhouse gases (GHGs) and criteria air pollutant emissions of MHD BEVs with their conventional diesel counterparts across weight classes and vocations. We expanded the Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Technologies (GREET) model to conduct the WTW analysis of MHDVs. The fuel economy for a wide wide range of MHDV weight classes and vocations, over various driving cycles, was evaluated using a high-fidelity vehicle dynamic simulation software (Autonomic). The environmental impacts of MHD BEVs are sensitive to the source of electricity used to recharge their batteries. The WTW results show that MHD BEVs significantly improve environmental silstainability of MHDVs by providing deep reductions in WTW GHGs, nitrogen oxides, volatile organic compounds, and carbon monoxide emissions, compared to conventional diesel counterparts. Increasing shares of renewable and natural gas technologies in future national and regional electricity generation are expected to reduce WTW particulate matters and sulfur oxide emissions for further improvement of the environmental performance of MHD BEVs.