Last week in one of Joanne Jacobs’s classes at UTS
, a group of her students put together an idea for a project that would convert existing autonomous haulage trucks
on mining sites into solar powered, green energy giants. It was part of an exercise, developing a lean canvas business plan for investment in a new, disruptive product, and as an hypothetical business, it was developed with a strong degree of flippancy.
But it was a bold idea.
While Jo smiled along with the other students in the class, it was important also to note that it’s these kind of off-the-wall ideas that actually can
change the world. Okay, you’re not going to power a haulage vehicle with solar energy, because: physics
. You may not even be able to get enough power from a vehicle lithium battery to run a haulage truck
Electric haulage is actually a very good idea, if you can overcome the power-to-weight-ratio conundrum. And with Mercedes releasing its own 26 tonne (200km limited) electric truck
last month, the chances of developing a fully electric fleet of haulage vehicles is tantalizingly close.