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post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old 07-23-02, 03:25 AM Thread Starter
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Hydraulic Power Assist To Hit Market

A very different form of hybrid power could make it to market by
mid-decade, Ford Motor Co. officials revealed during a technological background
session. Like other hybrids, the Hydraulic Power Assist system recaptures energy
lost during braking and cruising. But rather than storing that power in a
battery, HPA saves it in a hydraulic tank. Then, when a burst of power is needed,
the system can generate up to 600 lb-ft of torque, enough to boost the
take-off speed of a big, 8500 GVW F-Series by 30 percent. HPA can also be used
instead of the gasoline engine during normal start-ups and will operate at speeds
up to 30 mph. According to Ford researchers, the hydraulic assist approach is
significantly more efficient than battery hybrid power on large vehicles. A
secondary benefit is a 70-percent reduction in brake wear. Company officials
declined to discuss the anticipated price of HPA, but insisted it would yield
a significant savings in operating costs over the lifecycle of an E550

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