Volvo Trucks and FedEx Successfully Demonstrate Truck Platooning on N.C. 540 (Triangle Expressway)
Volvo Trucks North America, together with FedEx and the North Carolina Turnpike Authority, used advanced driver assistance system (ADAS) technology to conduct on-highway truck platooning as part of ongoing research collaboration.
Volvo Trucks North America announced today the successful on-highway demonstration of its truck platooning technology. The company has been working closely with FedEx and the North Carolina Turnpike Authority (NCTA) to expand on-highway operations of Volvo’s Cooperative Adaptive Cruise Control (CACC) in the United States on N.C. 540, the Triangle Expressway. This marks the first public on-highway showcase of platooning technology between a major truck manufacturer and a transportation company in the U.S.
“Volvo Trucks has long supported platooning because it benefits freight companies and professional drivers alike through safer, more fuel-efficient operations,” said Per Carlsson, Acting President of Volvo Trucks North America. “We continue preparing for deployment of trucks with greater vehicle-to-vehicle communication capabilities that support higher levels of ADAS. We know these technologies will be part of our future, but exact timing depends on many things, namely regulations, infrastructure, safety standards, and market demand.”
The “platoon” consisted of three trained, professional truck drivers in Volvo VNL tractors, each pulling double 28-foot trailers. Through CACC, a wireless vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication technology, the tractors and trailers remained in constant communication. The tractors and trailers traveled at speeds of up to 62 mph while keeping a time gap of 1.5 seconds, maintaining a closer distance than what is typical for on-highway tractors. Staged and unplanned vehicle cut-ins demonstrated how the technology handles common traffic situations.
“Volvo’s V2V technology is based on Dedicated Short-Range Communication (DSRC), which has proven its capability to perform well in the V2V environment," said Keith Brandis Volvo Trucks North America vice president for product planning. “Dedicated bandwidth within the 5.9GHz spectrum is critical for the successful deployment of V2V application, like truck platooning.”