Much attention has focused on autonomous trucks, truck platooning and electrification of trucking but what about the trailer?
WABCO’s eTrailer uses an electric motor to provide propulsion and regenerative braking to recharge batteries on the trailer to improve fuel efficiency 20% on short hauls, 10% on long hauls. Previous fuel efficiency efforts for transport trailers have utilized aerodynamic devices such as trailer fairings and trailer tails to reduce drag and fuel consumption. eTrailer takes a different approach, swapping out the trailer brakes for an electric motor to utilize the braking force of the trailer to generate power for later deployment.
Electric assist may also help transport trucks navigate snow covered roads more safely and without having to chain up as often. The management of trailer power and braking would be through the truck’s electronics stability program to ensure safe operation across all possible road conditions.
A great idea that makes use of the tires, axles and unused space under the trailer. eTrailer promises to reduce fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions for the trucking industry.