Electric Air Conditioning for Class 8 Tractors
Air conditioning and heating of heavy-duty truck cabs is an important contributor to engine efficiency, fuel economy and driver comfort. The air conditioner condenser coil and engine radiator typically share a common cooling fan, making it necessary to run the large engine cooling fan to provide condenser cooling. Engagement of the radiator cooling fan consumes a large amount of energy, further contributing to engine exhaust and noise emissions. Even under moderate temperature conditions, when the conventional engine-driven air conditioning compressor is not in use, the belt drive system adds a small speed-dependent parasitic load to the engine. Electrically driven air conditioning systems have the potential for lower energy consumption than their mechanical counterparts: Electrically driven air conditioning systems can reduce engine idle time by decoupling the air conditioner system from the engine cooling fan while offering near zero parasitic load when not in use.