Volvo Penta has started production of E-driveline for world’s first serial electric fire truck from partner vehicle manufacturer Rosenbauer. The ‘Revolutionary Technology’ (RT) – this is the name of the fire truck – had been previously announced, as well as the development of the E-driveline as well as the intensive testing stage for the RT vehicle. At that time, we said that the driveline would enable quite an innovative solution with zero exhaust emissions and significantly reduced noise levels. Rosenbauer, in cooperation with Volvo Penta, conceived a completely new vehicle architecture.
«A milestone in our electrification journey»
«We announced our emob partnership with Rosenbauer in 2019, and we have gone from concept to start of production in record time», said Giorgio Paris, President of Volvo Penta Industrial. «This is a milestone in our electrification journey. We see a growing demand for electric solutions in the market today and – through collaboration and pilot projects, such as this one – we aim to meet this demand and the expectations of the future».
Volvo Penta E-driveline for the fire truck
Talking about some technical insights of the project, the Swedish powertrain manufacturer stated that «the RT pushed Volvo Penta’s electric drivelines to new heights. Unlike other Volvo Group EVs that might have two or sometimes three electric machines, the RT required four to do its job. All four electric machines have to be able to run simultaneously – two for propulsion, one for the range extender to provide extra battery power, and one for electric power takeoff, if fire-fighters want to rotate the foam pump for example. To achieve this, the Volvo Penta engineers created a system that is completely cutting edge in terms of Volvo Group technology».
The innovative Active Cooling Unit
All this resulted in a new Active Cooling Unit (ACU), developed in part collaboration with Rosenbauer. The new ACU draws on a 600V system, instead of the conventional 24V. This extra power allows Volvo Penta to not only cool the batteries but also offer cooling capacity to the Rosenbauer vehicle. This is one way Volvo Penta has optimized the design and adapted the complete electric driveline system for a specific vehicle, considering the exact application, usage, climate, and environment it will operate in.
The first electric drivelines have entered the production stage at the Volvo Penta Vara plant in Sweden. Here the ACU is manufactured, and the system is kitted – loaded with software and packed together – to make installation as straightforward as possible for the customer.