KALAMAZOO, Mich. — Eaton Corp. recently announced the commercial availability of its hybrid-electric power system for IC Bus school buses.
Eaton worked with IC Bus to specially design its hybrid system for school bus deployment. The IC Bus CE Series hybrid bus combines the Advanced EGR-equipped MaxxForce DT with an electric motor that has a peak power output of 44 kilowatt.
The hybrid bus can reportedly provide up to a 30-percent improvement in fuel economy, up to a 35-percent reduction of NOx emissions and up to an 85-percent reduction of diesel particulates.
“School districts across the country are looking for ways to reduce their fuel cost and provide a greener footprint for their community without compromising passenger or driver comfort,” said Dimitri Kazarinoff, vice president and general manager for Eaton’s Hybrid Power Systems Division. "With the Eaton hybrid system, they now have a proven option that has more than 100 million miles of real-world experience.”
Through regenerative braking, battery charge is controlled to provide a steady supply of power. This allows for less wear and tear on brakes and additional operational savings, according to Eaton officials. The company matches the system to an automated six-speed Eaton transmission and stores energy in lithium-ion batteries.
The hybrid system also includes Eaton’s hill start assist technology, which keeps the bus from rolling backwards on a grade.
Company officials said that maintenance is simple with the system, requiring only a normal coolant check and battery compartment filter replacement in accordance with the regular maintenance schedule.
IC Bus and Eaton back up the entire hybrid system with a five-year, unlimited-mileage warranty.