Renewable Alternatives for Fossil Fuels in Non-Road Mobile Machinery: A Multicriteria Analysis

Non-Road Mobile Machinery (NRMM) incorporates a wide variety of machines not intended for the transport of passengers or goods on the road. This includes small gardening equipment, construction, mining, agricultural, and forestry machinery up to locomotives and inland waterway vessels, mostly using an internal combustion engine. NRMM was often overlooked and neglected in the past when considering pollutant and greenhouse gas emissions. Due to their high diversity, they are hard to categorize, resulting in a lack of available data. As emissions from road transport are being tackled by regulations, the emissions of NRMM become an increasing part of total transport emissions. An alternative to fossil fuels will be required for the energy supply of NRMM to fully commit to the CO2 reduction goals, and to fulfil the future requirements of legislators and public opinion. This study provides a report on the energy needs of different applications, mainly focusing on the larger machinery, as well as an overview of existing and expected technology. To conduct the analysis, a straddle carrier, excavator, locomotive, and inland water vessel were selected as case studies to cover a broad range of NRMM, ranging from 100kW to 1MW engines within different working environments. The intention is to match these, and similar applications, with the most appropriate currently available as well as future expected technology. A selection is made from the possibilities of different energy carriers, such as battery-electric, hydrogen, methane (LNG + CNG), ammonia, methanol, and HVO, in combination with a suitable energy converter, be it an electric motor, an internal combustion engine, a fuel cell or a hybrid system. A multi-criteria decision approach is used to analyse the performance of each option with the varying requirements of the applications in mind, covering environmental, technical, and economic aspects.


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  • Accession Number: 01892858
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: SAE International
  • Report/Paper Numbers: 2023-24-0086
  • Files: TRIS, SAE
  • Created Date: Sep 11 2023 1:40PM