Recovery Act brings E85, hybrid cars to Fermilab fleet
Fermilab will obtain new hybrid and E85-fueled vehicles.
Twenty-four new alternative-fuel vehicles will join the Fermilab fleet in the coming weeks, thanks to funds secured by the Department of Energy through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The acquisition includes 10 hybrid cars - nine Saturn Vues and one Ford Fusion - plus 11 Dodge Caravans and three Ford F-150 pickup trucks that run on E85, an ethanol fuel mix. The new models will replace five- to fifteen-year-old vehicles and provide fuel economy improvements of up to 20 miles per gallon.
"This is a big help to our fleet," said Dave Carlson, head of the Business Services Section. "It accelerates us toward our goal of converting completely to alternative-fueled vehicles, and it significantly reduces our maintenance costs."
DOE obtained funding from the Energy-Efficient Federal Motor Vehicle Fleet Procurement Program, a Recovery Act initiative organized by the U.S. General Services Administration. The move toward a fuel-efficient fleet also supports DOE's Transformational Energy Action Management (TEAM) initiative, a broad plan aimed at improving the department's energy, environmental, and transportation systems.
At Fermilab, George Davidson and colleagues in Transportation Services Department worked as DOE liaisons, demonstrating the lab's eligibility for the program and determining which cars to swap out of the fleet.
The new vehicles - all produced by U.S.-based companies - will come to Fermilab via Quad Cities Auto House in Milan, Ill. The Saturn Vues, already manufactured, are slated to arrive within two months, while the remaining models may take up to three months to build and deliver. Replaced cars will be shipped offsite for auction.
Once onsite, the new vehicles will go to work in a range of sections and divisions, transporting personnel and supporting facilities maintenance. Meanwhile, Business Services will continue its normal vehicle replacement scheme with a goal of achieving an entirely alternatively-fueled fleet by the end of FY2010.
-- Rachel Carr
The new vehicles include three Ford F-150 trucks. Image courtesy of Ford.