French firm Adgero unveiled what it claimed is the world’s first operational hybrid electric energy-saver for semi-trailers, in the form of its UltraBoost ST KERS (kinetic energy recovery system). The system was installed on an SDC 13.6 metre curtainsider in the livery of Eddie Stobart, which is conducting road trials, testing Adgero’s claim of up to 25% fuel and emissions savings.
The patented system comprises an electrically-driven axle, powered by graphene-based ultracapacitors from Skeleton Technologies, both mounted under the semi-trailer. Control is automatic, with acceleration delivered according to accelerator demand, but also potentially steering angle, gear selection and gradient – all via inductive CANbus loops. Motive power comes from a compact, lightweight YASA motor/generator.
“Because our system can be retrofitted to existing fleets, fleet implementations could have an impact on fleet costs and vehicle emissions within a very short timeframe,” says Adgero SAS president Mack Murray. Full scale production is predicted by late 2017.
Dearman – which is now partnering with Dawsonrentals truck & trailer to demonstrate zero-emission transport refrigeration – exhibited its base revolutionary clean, cold engine. The engine is fuelled by liquid nitrogen so delivers zero emissions. It is also very quiet and ultra-efficient.
Dawsonrentals is making Dearman-refrigerated vehicles available to operators, and managing director John Fletcher says the first demo unit will begin shortly with “a major UK commercial operator”. A second phase of demonstrations will commence later in the year. “There is an ever-stronger focus on the environment, and the need to cut emissions and boost efficiencies,” he says. “We are working to deliver access to the latest technologies to help customers, while also benefiting the community.”
The Dearman transport refrigeration system emits no PM or NOx. Dearman says that it can reduce a refrigerated truck’s overall PM emissions by up to 90% and NOx by 70%. Series production is likely within 18 months.
Over on Don-Bur’s stand, its novel ‘plasma actuators’, developed with Glasgow University, caused a stir. This system harnesses SDBD (single dielectric barrier discharge), under which air between pairs of electrodes becomes ionised (plasma), causing an air flow of 12 metres per second (when stationary) that can be harnessed to counter aerodynamic drag.
Don-Bur marketing manager Richard Owens explains that plasma actuators can be configured to mimic the effects, for example, of boat-tails, but without any risk of physical damage. The theory goes that. installed around the rear of a double deck trailer, SDBD technology could transform fuel costs. As Owens puts it: “You can have your cake and eat it.” Owens expects commercial availability by 2017.
Stars of Voith Turbo’s stand were a compressor for the retrofit truck market and its VIAB – known in Mercedes-Benz heavy haulage circles as TRC (turbo retarder clutch). Looking at the former, Voith claims reduced fuel consumption, lower emissions and longer duty cycles than competitors’ equipment, as well as high air quality. Sales and marketing manager John Domigan says those are due to the equipment’s newly developed idle system, as well as its intercooler, which cuts power uptake while reducing compression temperature.
As for VIAB –now standard fit on Mercedes-Benz Arocs and Actros SLT tractors over 120 tonnes – this is a revolutionary start-up and braking system designed for heavy haulage, and promising zero wear on loads up to 250 tonnes. “VIAB combines the advantages of hydrodynamics with the efficiencies of a mechanical driveline, as well as featuring a powerful primary retarder,” stated Domigan.
Sigmavision launched what it claims is the world’s first 3D hand-held tyre scanner. Dubbed TreadReader, this is a compact and patented unit designed to measure tread depth on all vehicle types, from LCVs to HGVs, buses and trailers, even when wet or dirty. Managing director Andrew Pryce says it can reveal badly or unevenly worn tyres symptomatic of problems such as misalignment or worn suspension. Colour coded 3D scans enable optimal tyre husbandry.
The technology creates a 3D scan using 320,000 measurement points, delivering an all-round accuracy better than 0.2mm per tyre. Scans can be viewed on a tablet, mobile phone or PC, alongside calculated tread depths, and the system is compatible with Android, Windows or iOS.
Most of us have seen 3G cameras by now, but VisionTrack’s VT2000 telematics device is interesting not least because it can transmit video footage using compressed data. A 10-second clip can be transferred in under 350kb. Simon Marsh, VisionTrack’s managing director, says that means fleet managers can see greater volumes of driving footage. That not only helps with driver monitoring and training, but also means faster access to video and telematics data in the event of an incident.
Magyar’s battery-powered electric pumping system on its Eco Friendly milk collection tanker means the tractor’s engine is not needed for pumping power, so there’s no PTO either. The benefits are ultra-low noise, fewer emissions and fuel-savings. Its lithium battery pack, mounted on the offside of the chassis, is charged by the tractor while on the move.
The tri-axle 29,000 litre stainless steel insulated tanker, complete with Piper milk collection system and powered internal hose-reel, has a Tridec command-steer trailing axle and lift-up front axle. It will shortly participate in a UK customer roadshow.
Having already offered step-frame low-loaders to British heavy hauliers, Kässbohrer has increased its UK service network to 21 and is introducing products for the construction sector – including this 13.6 metre K.SPW.XS heavy-duty platform trailer with 30mm thick hardwood floor, post pockets and detachable front panel, along with chemical and powder tankers and a four twist lock skeletal for 40- and 45-foot boxes.
Kässbohrer’s Goch plant, in Germany, uses zinc-phosphate pre-coated chassis frames supplied by its Turkish parent company Tirsan, the largest semi-trailer manufacturer in Eastern Europe.
Making its NEC debut, Chereau’s SmartOpen-C electric rear door – which opens above the roof and not inside the body – reflects increasing demand for low-noise bodywork and quieter urban deliveries. It opens or closes in less than 10 seconds (so internal temperatures are more easily maintained) and has already gained Dutch PIEK low-noise certification. An anti-trapping/pinch system is standard. Chereau can also fit noise-deadening floors to its bodies and trailers.
Following a record 2015, Cartwright made its biggest-ever splash at the CV Show with two stands showing-off its broad product portfolio. including its first-ever fully-insulated 11 metre curtainsider tandem-axle urban trailer for Culina, plus its latest insulated bodywork range for 3.5—7.5-tonne vans and light-middleweights.
The body on the Fuso Canter seen here features the rear sloping roof aerodynamic design, developed for Cartwright’s Cheetah Fastback trailers. The company’s insulated conversion for the Mercedes Sprinter is particularly well-executed.
Thanks to a system based on belt-driven alternators developed by International Refrigeration Cooling, Montracon can use its trailers’ wheels to generate electrical power. Energy stored in a lead-acid battery-pack can not only power a fridge but also a tail-lift and even charge an electric pallet truck.
Obvious wins include lower diesel costs and less noise. Major fleet operator and project co-partner Fowler Welch will conduct trials with the prototype installation. The system weighs around 550kg and can be retrofitted, as is the case of the Fowler Welch unit.
At the NEC, Sainsbury’s took delivery of the world’s first temperature-controlled trailer with Carrier Transicold’s prototype fridge unit that uses CO2 as a ‘natural’ refrigerant. The 13.6 metre tri-axle dual-compartment Gray & Adams trailer drew a lot of attention.
This closed-loop system is packaged within an existing Carrier Vector frame and powered by the fridge manufacturer’s patented E-Drive all-electric system. Carrier Transicold points out that CO2 has a global warming potential (GWP) of one, making it the benchmark for all other refrigerants.
Tiger Trailers’ display was based around the second generation of its full-length hydraulic moving deck trailer. The design has already gained favour from home delivery specialist AO.com, for whom Tiger builds double-deck trailers for AO’s UK and German operations. Compared to a conventional step-frame, the 4.97 metre version seen at the NEC offers 20% more load-fill.
Tiger has also launched a double-deck trailer servicing operation that will deliver on-site maintenance and technician training, including the option of an embedded facility within existing fleet workshops. Since starting in 2014, Tiger has got some 1,200 trailers on the road.
Feldbinder’s 40m3 aluminium cement tanker for Damac tares at an impressive 4,600kg with BPW running gear, and features the latest emergency-stop system which immediately closes the product line valve and simultaneously opens an air valve to vent the tank in the event of a spillage or burst hose.
The German manufacturer also showed an edible oils tanker built for Cargill, with a full-length opening hose tray that allows the driver to inspect the hose in-situ, on the tray, rather than having to remove it from a hose tube.
Whale Tankers’ bright orange 44-tonne KaiserWhale – designed, engineered and built for national operator Hydro Cleansing for its toughest UK assignments – was among the most impressive of trucks. KaiserWhale is a proven concept – combining jetting and vacuum operations for continuous water recycling – but this striking monster is the first to feature dual Kaiser 4000i vacuum ring pumps.
Hydro Cleansing managing director Steve Hoad, who specified the vehicle, says it will be used to tackle everything from clearance of deep shafts and sewers to pumping stations. Impressive features of this beast – aside from its livery – include the dewatering decant pumps, each capable of shifting 2,000 lpm, and a hydraulically driven screw compressor delivering 140 cfm at 7 bar.