FPInnovations’ PIT Group and the American Trucking Associations’ Technology & Maintenance Council’s (TMC) joint research projects announced last spring are in full swing. PIT Group researchers are evaluating cutting-edge electromechanical brakes (EMB) for semi-trailer trucks and validating a fuel-savings calculator for aerodynamic devices.
The results of the projects stand to increase the efficiency and performance of fleets across North America. PIT Group’s reputation for providing neutral third-party professional testing and scientific research makes these results highly anticipated by TMC.
The PIT Group has begun contacting major braking-system suppliers and original-equipment manufacturers to identify the state of design, prototype development and available testing data.
The PIT Group will also evaluate EMB compatibility with air braking systems, the impact of regenerative braking on EMB performance and optimization on electric and hybrid heavy-duty vehicles, as well as identify challenges regarding communication between tractor and trailer.
The project should be completed in early 2020. TMC is also interested in identifying prototypes for a potential second phase of the project to test and compare EMB to air braking systems.
Validating TMC’s RP 1118 fuel-savings calculator for aerodynamic devices has also begun with a review of test results and other reliable sources to reference aerodynamic test data and compile information. The results will be used in the proposed update to the calculator to better help the user choose a realistic set of inputs.
The calculator is a helpful tool for fleet managers and owner-operators to evaluate the options available in aerodynamic technologies. The review should be completed by the end of the year.
For more information on the PIT Group’s collaborative projects with TMC, please contact Marius Surcel.