When driving in fleets of two to five trucks, dedicated truck transport operators tend to drive in a tight formation. This is done to minimize the distance between trucks, which allows the big rigs to catch a slipstream and cut back on fuel use. Truck makers are currently investing in platooning technology. This allows truckers to tailgate in a fleet in a safe manner.
Platooning Technology at a Glance
Platooning technology consists of a combination of radar, active braking, and vehicle-control algorithms that digitally link the trucks together. For example, if the lead truck brakes, then the one behind it mimics the action by employing the automatic brakes. This keeps the trucks in close quarters to reduce wind resistance while also preventing the possibility of a collision from following too closely.
The Mastermind Behind Platooning Technology
Platooning technology is currently under development by Peloton Technology. The name “Peloton” is derived from the term that describes bicyclists who travel in a tight group to reduce wind resistance, thereby reducing energy expenditure. As of July 2015, the company has raised over $18 million from 13 investors.
Platooning technology has met with wide praise but also with some skepticism. The state of Missouri, for example, has banned testing of platooning technology on its roads. The technology may also run into legal hurdles. Some states require trucks to retain a separation of two to three seconds; platooning technology keeps the trucks closer. The American Trucking Associations has also expressed interest in the technology but is not endorsing it.
Big Changes Taking Place in the Shipping Sector
We thought this was interesting news to share. Technology, after all, is rapidly changing the face of the industry. Expect more similar technology in 2017.
Contact Machine Transport to schedule your next shipment. The LTL and truckload line haul service we work with are benefiting from innovative technology. Platooning technology is one such innovation that may reduce operational costs; this may trickle down to lower service fees for companies like yours.
Edited by Justin Vorhees
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