28 September 2016, New York
Two-truck platooning, an emerging technology, is a viable method for reducing fuel consumption, according to the latest Confidence Report released today by the North American Council for Freight Efficiency (NACFE) and Carbon War Room.
The potential fuel consumption savings versus an isolated single vehicle varies depending on the separation distance of the trucks, but at a 40- to 50- foot following distance, it can lead to 4% average savings over the two trucks in real-world operating conditions after accounting for traffic, terrain and time when equipped trucks will not be operating in a platoon.
The report details how platooning combines existing commercial vehicle communication systems with emerging vehicle-to-vehicle safety technology. It also explores some of the challenges presented by platooning, such as driver acceptance, platoon integrity, system security, and amount of time platooning.
This is the first time Trucking Efficiency has released a Confidence Report on an emerging technology. Despite being a relatively new practice, there is enough data available to bring a foundational understanding of two-truck platooning, and in turn, to advise the industry on how to eliminate or mitigate the challenges to adoption identified in the report. Also, the technologies used for two-truck platooning are fundamental to the longer-term autonomous trucking initiative. NACFE plans to publish further reports on other emerging technologies in the future.
About Confidence Reports
This report is part of our Confidence Report series, intended to help end users and manufacturers determine whether to adopt a specific technology or set of solutions. The series also includes tire pressure systems, 6x2 axle configurations, idle reduction technology, electronically controlled transmissions, programmable engine parameters, low rolling resistance tires, lightweighting, downspeeding, tractor aerodynamics, trailer aerodynamics, and lubricants. Promising technologies for additional Confidence Reports are currently being identified.
Trucking Efficiency created an interactive information platform at www.truckingefficiency.org to help users make more confident adoption decisions by providing detailed information on efficiency technologies, including data from across a variety of fleets and best practices for adoption.
Main image: Navistar.