Electrically Driven A/C Compressors
The A/C compressor aids the movement of the refrigerant for the cab air conditioning system. Although it only operates as required, sleeper compartments require A/C when the truck is parked.
The modern air conditioning system for vehicles includes a belt-driven, clutched compressor that takes power from the engine to drive a refrigerant through a closed-cycle system of heat exchangers and valves. The heat exchanger and refrigerant system are designed to remove heat from the passenger compartment of the vehicle and reject that heat through the air conditioning condenser coil that is located in front of the radiator.
The only electrically-driven air conditioning compressors on the market now are ones used for battery APUs and ones that are installed on hybrid-electric transit buses. Currently, none are available or projected for standard on-highway vehicles.
If coupled with higher capacity and high voltage electric systems, there will be modest fuel savings.
Not Available for Most Vehicles as of March 2017
Increased Complexity of Electrical System
Higher Electrical System Voltage and Power Output Required
Electrically driven accessories will add to the electric load on the vehicle.
Increased Maintenance Costs
To learn more, download the Variable Engine-Driven Accessories Confidence Report.