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Freightliner LLC opens full-scale wind tunnel facility in Portland

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Freightliner LLC announced the opening of an advanced transportation research facility to study t...

PORTLAND, Ore. — Freightliner LLC announced the opening of an advanced transportation research facility to study the aerodynamics of heavy- and medium-duty vehicles.

Located near the company’s headquarters here, the new Freightliner Wind Tunnel accommodates a full-sized heavy-duty truck. Over the coming years, the Freightliner Group will use data and experience from the wind tunnel testing to refine the aerodynamics on its trucks with the overall objective of reducing fuel consumption and emissions.

Freightliner marked the facility’s opening with a ceremony attended by Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski; U.S. Representative David Wu; Portland Mayor Vera Katz; project participants; media; and Freightliner engineering and corporate staff.

“The new wind tunnel facility is an example of Freightliner’s continuing focus on technological leadership in the truck manufacturing industry,” said Rainer Schmueckle, President and CEO of Freightliner LLC. “The wind tunnel will help us make further gains in aerodynamics and fuel efficiency, which will ultimately lower operating costs for our customers. By designing more fuel efficient vehicles with the help of this new tool, we will also contribute to the goal of environmental protection.”

All Freightliner LLC commercial vehicles will be tested at this new research facility. Using the wind tunnel, Freightliner engineers will examine air flow over the hood, under the vehicle, and past the windows and mirrors. Engineers will also study how air flow affects engine cooling and splash and spray generation. Freightliner LLC will use this wind tunnel not only to test upcoming new products, but to refine aerodynamics on existing vehicles.

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