BLAINVILLE, Que. — At the Transport Canada test track in Blainville, Que. yesterday, FPInnovations, Manac and Cascades showed off what they are billing as a “state-of-the-art” semi-trailer design.
Wind tunnel tests this summer of models measured a 12% reduction in aerodynamic drag, which suggests that fuel consumption could be reduced by as much as 6%.
Manac rebuilt the top front edge of the roof to give it a high-radius curve and sloped the rear 10 feet of the roof to drop the rear edge by seven inches.
By using a “wedge” trailer, which has a sloping floor and oversize doors, the net height of the doors after the modification is the same as standard doors. The internal volume of the trailer is the same as that of a standard 53-foot trailer.
The trailer is on the Energotest 2011 test schedule this week: PIT, which conducts the tests, is comparing fuel consumption pulling the modified trailer with a standard trailer, and also with side skirts. Energotest results are usually shared only with PIT members, but because Manac will want to use the test results to promote the design, it is expected that these trailer test results will be made public this fall.
We’ll have more in the November issue of Truck News.
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