Browse Publications Technical Papers 2020-01-0594

Impact of Lateral Alignment on the Energy Savings of a Truck Platoon 2020-01-0594

A truck platooning system was tested using two heavy-duty tractor-trailer trucks on a closed test track to investigate the sensitivity of intentional lateral offsets over a range of intervehicle spacings. The fuel consumption for both trucks in the platoon was measured using the SAE J1321 gravimetric procedure while travelling at 65 mph and loaded to a gross weight of 65,000 lb. In addition, the SAE J1939 instantaneous fuel rate was calibrated against the gravimetric measurements and used as proxy for additional analyses. The testing campaign demonstrated the effects of intervehicle gaps, following-vehicle longitudinal control, and manual lateral control. The new results are compared to previous truck-platooning studies to reinforce the value of the new information and demonstrate similarity to past trends. Fuel savings for the following vehicle was observed to exceed 10% at closer following distances. The results showed that energy savings generally increased in a non-linear fashion as the gap was reduced. The impact of different following-truck lateral offsets had a measurable impact, with up to 4% reduction in total fuel-savings (relative to an isolated vehicle condition) observed for offsets up to 1.3 m. The fuel-consumption savings on the straight segments of the track exceeded those on the curved segments by upwards of 6% and highlight some potential differences expected between close-track testing and on-highway use.


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