The e-highway is not your normal express highway. Here, E stands for ‘electric’. The Indian government is showing interest in this new type of mobility that could literally change the way we look at highways. Earlier this week, India’s Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari mentioned that the government wants to build an e-highway from Delhi to Mumbai on a 1300-km road.
Speaking at a function, Gadkari said, “We plan to build an electric highway from Delhi to Mumbai. You can also drive a trolley truck like a trolleybus.” While this may not be an official announcement, we can assume that the government is serious about the project as the idea has been mentioned before.
What is e-highway?
There can be several versions of an e-highway. However, a common thread would be electricity. E-highways will be able to provide high voltage to vehicles while running. This will enable electric or hybrid vehicles to travel long distances without stopping specifically for charging.
Now, coming to the different variants and possible variant that may be offered in India.
- This version of the e-highway is being tested in Germany. The highway will have a dedicated lane with high-tension electrical cables running through the length of the road. These cables will cover only one lane. Compatible buses and trucks will be able to connect to these power cables to receive electricity. In the case of metro rail or tram there will be no need for sighted tracks.
- This is a variant that is being tested in the US market. In this version, there is no need for overhead cables. Instead, there will be charging coils under specific e-highway lanes that will be capable of charging an electric car, bus or truck. This will enable a wider class of vehicles to ply on the e-highway and also make the highway cable-free.
Both these systems have their advantages and disadvantages. However, they are still being tested in different parts of the world. In India this idea is still in the stage of consideration. Although the development of the Delhi-Mumbai Expressway is in full swing, we can expect the government to soon approve or reject the proposal for an e-highway.
Delhi to Mumbai e-highway post: How the face of Indian highways may soon change First appeared on BGR India.