Supplier Spotlight

Show Reviews

Automotive Testing Expo Europe 2016 Show Review

Click here to read

 

Automotive Testing Expo Europe 2015 Show Review

Click here to read

 

Automotive Testing Expo North America 2014 Show Review

Click here to read

 

Automotive Testing Expo India 2014 Show Review

Click here to read

 

Latest Video


Automated vehicle test initiative

LV

A new National Cooperative Highway Research Program in automated vehicle testing is now underway at the Texas A&M Transportation Institute.

Click here to watch the video

BMW 5 Series crash testing

LV

High-speed dynamic footage of the new model undergoing frontal, side and pole impacts as part of the 2017 Euro NCAP safety tests.

Click here to watch the video

Ford Performance RS RX development

LV

This behind the scenes footage gives an insight into the engineering process of the vehicle's wing, suspension, driveshaft, and cockpit.

Click here to watch the video

Industry Opinion

« back to blog listings

Designing trucks for platooning

If Tesla wants its planned electric truck to come with enough range that is acceptable to haulage fleets, it might need to accelerate research into platooning. Platooning is when smart trucks connect digitally to travel in close convoy, in order to improve overall fuel economy.

The benefits of drafting in this manner have been proven. In April this year, a fleet of trucks from all of the major European manufacturers linked via wi-fi to take part in a Dutch-organized transcontinental drive. They cut following distances from around 160ft to 50ft and saved around 10% on fuel. Exa has partnered with OEMs as well to investigate the platooning effect through simulation. Two papers, presented at SAE International conferences, (2014-01-2436 with Peterbilt, and 2015-01-2896 with Volvo) have shown how multi-vehicle platooning affects the aerodynamics and leads to fuel economy improvement.

The saving comes from the decrease in drag on the trailing trucks traveling in the wake of the lead vehicle as well as trailing trucks ‘pushing’ on the leading vehicle by increasing the base pressure on rear of the trailer at close enough distances. But to get trucks following really closely, the design of the trucks themselves needs to be modified.

The simulations have shown that roughly 30ft is the optimum distance to maintain between platooning trucks, without triggering the engine cooling fans of any of the following vehicles. Any closer and additional cooling to replace the air that’s being blocked by the truck in front is required, which in turn reduces some of the fuel saving.

You can get around this by focusing on active cooling. The best solution would be to design cooling ducts that open fully when in the middle of the platoon to keep the engine cool, but close again if driving solo or leading the platoon. Electric trucks, such as the one Tesla is planning, won’t need quite as much cooling so it could close the gap even further to the truck in front.

Such will be the benefit of having your truck in the middle of the platoon that we think it’ll trigger a whole new economy around booking the best slot. Our simulations show that the middle tractor-trailer gets the most benefit in terms of economy from platooning, so we’d expect that would be the most expensive position.

An alternative option could be to take turns at the front of the platoon by sequentially swapping positions, just like cyclists do in long-distance races. However that would be logistically more difficult to organize and require more fuel and road space for maneuvering.

The overall cost benefits of platooning to fleet users are obvious. Trucks designed to run in the middle of platoons won’t need the same horsepower to operate at highway speeds, and those fleets running more conventional trucks designed to lead would be paid by those further back in the convoy.

Thanks to aerodynamic advances and smart connectivity, road haulage costs could drop significantly as these trucks get smarter and forward-thinking fleet users feed the marketplace.

October 13, 2016

 

Comments:

There are currently no comments.

If you would like to post a comment about this blog, please click here.
Read Latest Issue
Read Latest Issue

Web Exclusives

Materials evaluation at SEAT

An electron microscope installed at the auto maker’s technical center in Martorell, Spain, provides powerful analysis capabilities in materials durability testing
Click here to read more



Water management simulation

BMW used the latest Exa PowerFlow water management capabilities to develop its windscreen sprayer modules
Click here to read more



Augmented reality enhances VW development

ATTI visits Volkwagen’s Virtual Engineering Lab in Wolfsburg, Germany, where augmented reality is enabling vehicle developers to complete more design iterations faster
Click here to read more



PSA and Exa in CAE development tie-up

The French OEM has ambitious aims to develop all of its vehicles entirely using CAE by 2025
Click here to read more



Hyster-Yale Group uses HBM technology

R&D engineers at Hyster are able to collect, process and report on 95% of all test data during physical analysis using HBM test and measurement systems
Click here to read more




Supplier Spotlight

Supplier SpotlightClick here for listings and information on leading suppliers covering all aspects of the automotive testing industry. Want to see your company included? Contact jason.sullivan@ukimediaevents.com for more details.

فروشگاه اینترنتی فروشگاه اینترنتی سیستم همکاری در فروش خرید شارژ ایرانسل دانلود فیلم دانلود فیلم

Submit your industry opinion

Industry BlogDo you have an opinion you'd like to share with the automotive testing community? Good or bad, we'd like to hear your views and opinions on the leading issues shaping the industry. Share your comments by sending up to 500 words to john.thornton@ukimediaevents.com

Advertising

Recruitment AdTo receive information on booking an advertising banner please email jason.sullivan@ukimediaevents.com