Aerotruck

AERODYNAMICS THEORY & RESEARCH ARICLES

BRIEF HISTORY OF DEVELOPMENT OF TRUCK AERODYNAMICS & CURRENT RESEARCH ARTICLES

BRIEF HISTORY OF DEVELOPMENT OF TRUCK AERODYNAMICS & CURRENT RESEARCH ARTICLES

Development of aerodynamics for commercial vehicles has evolved over many years. In 1935 the Labatt Brewing Company developed a streamlined ‘fish shape’ truck for advertising purposes and to provide larger load capacity capable of achieving higher cruising speeds. The success of this effort is demonstrated by the fact that while trucks of the day travelled at 55 km/h, the Labatt truck could cruise at 80 km/h with a fifty percent larger load. Little interest appears to have developed from this early start.

Yet when one considers that Aerodynamic Drag is the cause for more than two-thirds of the fuel consumption of large trucks at highway speeds it seems strange that real attention to ways of achieving fuel savings and the role played by aerodynamics only began with the fuel crisis in 1980. With the Middle East war and resulting shortages of oil it became apparent that considerably more research needed to be done in order to reduce the cost to the operator of moving goods over hundreds of kilometres.

Today’s aerodynamic options available on the market range from relatively simplistic to the highly complex and with varying results in terms of fuel saving outcomes that can be expected. The science continues to evolve now with rear fitted boat-tails gaining wider acceptance in Europe.

Fitting the correct aerodynamic configuration will save the operator between 8% and 12.5% on his diesel bills and on long distance vehicles a roof-mounted aerokit will generally pay for itself within 4 to 8 months (mileage and speed dependent).

The following two graphs illustrate how aerodynamics serve to streamline the wind up and over the truck so that instead of driving a solid ‘brick’ into the air resistance (This is illustrated by the Green bar and which uses up to 50% of the vehicle’s power) there is far less resistance and consequently less fuel needs to be used.

Below the graphics we have listed several excellent technical articles which give in-depth information on how the various truck aerodynamic options available work.

Development of aerodynamics for commercial vehicles has evolved over many years. In 1935 the Labatt Brewing Company developed a streamlined ‘fish shape’ truck for advertising purposes and to provide larger load capacity capable of achieving higher cruising speeds. The success of this effort is demonstrated by the fact that while trucks of the day travelled at 55 km/h, the Labatt truck could cruise at 80 km/h with a fifty percent larger load. Little interest appears to have developed from this early start.

Yet when one considers that Aerodynamic Drag is the cause for more than two-thirds of the fuel consumption of large trucks at highway speeds it seems strange that real attention to ways of achieving fuel savings and the role played by aerodynamics only began with the fuel crisis in 1980. With the Middle East war and resulting shortages of oil it became apparent that considerably more research needed to be done in order to reduce the cost to the operator of moving goods over hundreds of kilometres.

Today’s aerodynamic options available on the market range from relatively simplistic to the highly complex and with varying results in terms of fuel saving outcomes that can be expected. The science continues to evolve now with rear fitted boat-tails gaining wider acceptance in Europe.

Fitting the correct aerodynamic configuration will save the operator between 8% and 12.5% on his diesel bills and on long distance vehicles a roof-mounted aerokit will generally pay for itself within 4 to 8 months (mileage and speed dependent).

The following two graphs illustrate how aerodynamics serve to streamline the wind up and over the truck so that instead of driving a solid ‘brick’ into the air resistance (This is illustrated by the Green bar and which uses up to 50% of the vehicle’s power) there is far less resistance and consequently less fuel needs to be used.

Below the graphics we have listed several excellent technical articles which give in-depth information on how the various truck aerodynamic options available work.

Aerodynamic
Truck Aerodynamics
Aerodynamics

RESEARCH ARTICLES

RESEARCH ARTICLES