Idle Reduction

TruckGen's Auxiliary Power Unit on a Peterbilt truck.

Photo courtesy of Next Generation Power

Long-haul trucks idling overnight consume more than 838 million gallons of fuel each year. So why do truckers keep their engines idling when they're not in motion? Idling engines heat and cool the cabin, generate electricity for amenities, operate a generator, and eliminate the difficulty of starting a cold engine.

Alternatives to idling that do not involve using a truck's high-horsepower, high-torque engine to produce power for overnight needs could save a significant amount of fuel, reduce emissions, and cut operating costs. The Advanced Vehicle Testing Activity (AVTA) team is investigating current technology alternatives to engine idling. See the Heavy-Duty Truck Idle Reduction Technology Demonstrations (PDF 244 KB). Download Adobe Reader.