What is hybrid propulsion?

Hybrid propulsion is any vehicle propulsion system that includes two or more sources of propulsion in one design, usually which can be used either together or alternately.

One of the most common of these systems in industry today combines a diesel engine with electric motors, at times operating purely on diesel power, at times operating purely on electrical power, and at times using a strategic mix of both. A common variation of that is the gasoline-electric hybrid design, often seen in personal automobiles.

The benefits of hybrid propulsion design are as varied as the types of vehicles they can power. Buses, boats, trucks, aircraft, and military vehicles that do a lot of work in standby, line-sitting, or low-speed transit mode can waste fuel – and fuel budgets – using a traditional diesel propulsion system. A diesel electric hybrid propulsion system can deliver fuel savings, higher average engine load, lower maintenance costs, increased uptime, and more.

As fossil fuel costs and pollution concerns continue to rise worldwide, interest in and development of more fuel efficient, lower polluting propulsion systems that also deliver real power – like hybrid propulsion – will continue to grow.

 


This information page is provided as a service to our readers by BAE Systems, Inc., a U.S.-based world leader in aerospace, defense, power, and intelligence solutions. Learn more about us here.