MAN to join European Truck Platooning Challenge

MAN Truck & Bus has given the green light for its convey joining the European Truck Platooning Challenge 2016

Man Truck & Bus.
Man Truck & Bus.

MAN Truck & Bus has given the green light for its convey joining the European Truck Platooning Challenge 2016 being run by the Dutch government as part of their EU Presidency.

 The project aims to explore the potential in terms of road safety and to increase the efficiency of road freight transport.

More specifically, the project intends to reduce CO2 emissions by employing 'slipstream driving', whilst simultaneously improving traffic safety on motorways by lightening the burden on drivers.

MAN Truck & Bus is participating in this research project by providing test vehicles.

The MAN convoy, or 'platoon', consisting of two MAN TGX 18.480 semitrailer tractors, set off from Munich on 4 April 2016 heading for Rotterdam, which will host a demonstration of technology from all participating manufacturers on 6 April 2016 ahead of the meeting of EU transport ministers.

Joachim Drees, CEO of Man Truck & Bus AG, said: "Economy and environmental compatibility will require new strategies in the future. 

"While consuption in the traditional automotive industry can only be adjusted to a limited extent through improvements in aerodynamics, lightweight construction and drive technology, digital innovations can deliver significantly greater economy."

Franz Freiherr von Redwitz, managing director of MAN Truck & Bus Middle East, added: "As an industry leader, we are committed to exploring new technologies and initiatives that can improve the overall performance of the changes that will come into place in the transportation industry in the future due to the impact of such digital innovations.”

Platooning involves two or more truck and trailer combinations travelling in close proximity with the aid of technical driver assistance and control systems and car-to-car communication, whilst simultaneously enhancing road safety.

Thanks to this electronic 'tow bar', the longitudinal and lateral control of the vehicle to the rear is automated; in other words it follows the HGV in front.

Here, the distance between each semitrailer combination is under 15 metres or around half a second of driving time.

'Slipstream driving' set up in this way enables fuel savings, depending on vehicle type and the length of the convoy, of up to ten percent for the whole platoon, bringing with it a reduction in CO2 emissions. The desired effects are best achieved at a speed of 80 km/h.


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