• Fuel Reduction and Safety Technologies
  • June 30, 2017
  • Senators from Michigan are hoping to pass legislation designed to encourage investments in zero-emissions research and development, advanced fuel reduction, and safety technologies; making trucks and cars safer and more efficient. The Senate attempted to pass a similar bill during the last session of Congress, but the House and Senate were unable to agree on all aspects of the bill. In addition to ensuring that the next generation of cars are safer and more efficient than before, the bill will position the United States’ automobile industry as a leader in cutting-edge technology.

    According to Senator Gary Peters, D-Michigan and the bill’s lead author, the United States and Michigan are creating some of the most innovative safety technologies in the automobile industry today. This bipartisan bill will solidify our position as a leader in new technologies that improve fuel efficiency, save money, and help support the economy.

    The bill also supports the Department of Energy’s Vehicle Technologies Office, which provides research grants for projects that focus on improving the fuel efficiency of light, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles, including big-rigs. In addition, the bill urges the office to reach out to other departments who are conducting similar research in an effort to coordinate activities.

    New Technology Requires Financial Support

    According to the CEO of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, in an effort to address our country’s energy security and environmental concerns, automobile manufacturers are focused on the development of new, innovative technologies and alternative fuel options. This requires a significant financial investment so that the appropriate research, design, development, testing, and certification can be completed. If passed, the legislation will increase funding for research and development for the following fuel-saving technologies:
    • Vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communications
    • Mild hybrid
    • Engine downspeeding
    • Power pack modeling and testing
    • Advanced boosting systems
    • New vehicle sensing and communication
    • Hydrogen and natural gas refueling
    • Electric charging technology
    Senator Peters also stated that the bill would include $313.6 million in funding for the fiscal year of 2018, with a four percent increase each year until 2022. This would ensure that steady funding is available to help manufacturers keep up with new technologies that can reduce fuel costs. Currently, the bill is getting support from the Motor and Equipment Manufacturers Association, the Auto Alliance, the BlueGreen Alliance, and the NTEA.

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