LEEFF (Low Emission Electric Freight Fleets)


Global warming, created by large scale emissions of greenhouse gasses, is a top environmental concern nowadays. Road freight transportation is a major contributor to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. With an increasing concern for the environment, logistics providers and freight carriers have started paying more attention to the negative externalities of their operations. Electric vehicles (EVs) are often mentioned as one of the solutions to the problems of fossil fuel dependence and greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector. If this technology matures, the prices will fall and EVs will penetrate the market and bring the benefits of more efficient and cleaner vehicles. However, there are significant barriers to overcome, where the most important one is probably the limitations of battery technology.

The battery is the key parameter to reduce the total cost of ownership (TCO). Thus the main aim is to lay out a sophisticated but practical battery and charging strategy. Several charging strategies from high power charging to battery swapping are investigated within this project. Additionally, extensive routing plans in conjunction with driver supporting systems and adapted business models are the key for the successful implementation of electric light commercial vehicles (LCV) in tour planning. In a demonstration phase, key parameters to cut the TCO of electric LCV will be tested and improved.

In the LEEFF project, an advanced electric vehicle above 3,5t together with an adapted battery and a smart charging station for commercial use at logistical hubs will be developed and an innovative business model for fleet operators together with adapted planning and communication tools will be realized as a prototype. The overall project goal is a cost-neutral execution strategy for fleet operators and providers to position electric vehicles as an acceptable substitute to classical diesel powered vehicles. Part of the project is a mobile communication app for dynamic processing of data. Telematic data and driver behavior will be transferred and processed on a central platform, and necessary information such as route, customer, vehicle and charging information can be accessed by the driver via a mobile device. This application will also provide a direct link to dispatchers and receivers to be able to adapt to unpredictable situations like traffic jams or last-minute order changes.