Volta Partners with Hiab on Electric Storage for Truck Liftgates

February 21, 2019 by Scott McMahan

Volta Power Systems announced a partnership with Hydrauliska Industri AB (Hiab) on hybrid-electric energy storage systems for the company's Waltco brand liftgates. Hiab is a Swedish firm known for producing hydraulic cranes and other heavy hydraulic-augmented vehicles such as forklifts, and it also makes hydraulic liftgates for common trucks.

All such hydraulic systems, including common liftgates, require power. That is where Volta's systems come in, where a truck's batteries alone will not provide enough power continuously to run the auxiliary tasks. With the Volta system (see image above), liftgates perform over 80 lifts on a single charge, significantly lowering idle time and carbon emissions to meet anti-idle regulations.

"State regulations to minimize carbon emissions are putting a pinch on drivers who can no longer rely on idling to power their lifts," said Dan Knechtel, technical project manager at Hiab/Waltco. "The hybrid-electric Volta system outperforms AGM batteries with eight times the capacity, and it empowers drivers to make deliveries all-day for multiple days before charging."

Many states and cities have developed their own idle regulations. Idling helps trucks power energy-intensive auxiliary functions, such as liftgates.

"Whether it's no-idle in Chicago or five-minute idle on the east coast, drivers need the ability to make multiple stops and still operate their lifts while meeting regulations," said Jack Johnson, co-founder of Volta Power Systems. "With the Volta system, drivers can run efficient routes and still have all the power they need to run their lifts, allowing them to save money, operate more efficiently and access more power."

Volta says the system produces enough energy to lift twice the weight, up to four times faster using a lighter, smaller system and less fuel overall. The industrial-grade system lasts the life of the truck and decreases downtime, requiring less maintenance and saving money otherwise spent on replacement batteries, according to Volta.

"Hiab is the leading provider of on-road load handling equipment and with the Volta system, we can offer even more efficient products to our customers," Knechtel said. "Not only does the Volta system save them on maintenance costs, but it also cuts down on missed or late deliveries due to road calls."

Hiab has installed the Volta system, equipped with a 300W solar panel, on several trucks. Trucks featuring the system will be on display at the TMC Annual 2019 Annual Meeting and the NTEA Work Truck Show in March.