High-power High-speed Road Train System 2003-01-3380
This paper presents the design and development of a high-power, high-speed “road train” (with both on- and off-road applications). The system looks to optimize both high-speed operation and low-speed, close-quarters driving with the introduction of autonomous power modules. Each trailer in the road train has it own electric traction system. When driving on open roads or in open areas, each traction system receives electric energy from the high-powered tractor. However, the individual traction systems allow for distributed tractive effort, improving upon the classic road train. Further, each module has its own independent steering system, allowing for practical implementation of longer trains. Use of longer trains in open areas allows for reduced operational costs, and increased efficiency. When mobility becomes a primary concern or zero emissions operation is needed, small power supplies can allow independent trailer operation.
This paper presents the design and layout of the road train system. Details are provided about the tandem electric axles, with electric differentials and independent steering. New innovations in power electronics, providing high power operation and affordable production costs are discussed. The paper also describes some new concepts for a high-powered tractor.