Volvo Trucks Takes the lead with tomorrow´s wireless road trains
07 Nov 2012
Eric Coelingh, Technical Specialist Active Safety, VCC
I have to admit that in the beginning it feels really unusual when you are prepared to take over at any moment. But it is also amazingly how quickly you get used to this and how quickly you start to become comfortable in this vehicle.
When science fiction becomes reality. That's one way of describing the Sartre road train research project. It enables car drivers to let go of the steering wheel while still rolling safely down the high way. The actual driving is left to modern, automated technology - and to the professional truck drivers.
Carl Johan Almqvist , Traffick & Product Safety Director Volvo Trucks
The road train should be led by a professional truck driver-who is trained to lead a road train. He has had a special training for this. He will also be supported by the state of the art technology in the truck.
Linda Wahlström, Project Manager, Sartre VCC
It´s quite fun to see the passing vehicles, they are quite surprised seeing me not driving but reading a magazine.
Vehicle platoons has two main benefits: It decreases the environmental impact and traffic becomes much safer.
Andreas Ekfjorden , Project Manager Project SARTRE for Volvo Trucks.
The platoon is held together by wireless technology. It allows the vehicles following to travel the trail of the lead truck-and to instantly react to any event.
90 percent of all accidents are due to the human factor. However, computer's can still do only what they're programmed to do. Thats why Volvo Trucks believe that the best way of using fully automated systems is by combining them with professional driver's knowledge and expertise. This also means a whole new area of business for the truck owners.
Carl Johan Almqvist
Road trains will be important for the environment-because we have an impact on fuel consumption in road trains. We can get a lower fuel consumption for all vehicles in the road train. And then also there's a benefit in it for the haulage company-that could get paid for being the lead vehicle.
What the project has shown is that it is technologically possible to implement platooned traffic with multiple vehicles. Therefore road trains could be a reality on the highways within 5-10 years. What will take time, however, is to change the social infrastructure, like legislation and public acceptance.
Initially people might be anxious, but on the other hand you don´t think twice of getting onboard a plane or a bus. Being on a road train is exactly the same, you are being led by a professional driver.
Marie VassiliadisDirector, Media RelationsSwedenmarie.email@example.com+46 31 3224127