Commercial Trucking: Streamlining the Big Box

This article describes how glass fiber-reinforced thermoplastics are helping the commercial trucking industry optimize weight, fuel and cost savings by redesigning tractor trailers. The mandated fuel efficiency goals and tailpipe emissions restrictions that are currently in place pose a significant challenge to the entire auto industry, but for those who build commercial trucks, the cost of ownership looms just as large. Every kilogram of mass removed from a tractor or trailer saves fleet managers and individual owner/operators money on fuel and allows them to carry more product per load while remaining under legal load limits. Similarly, box-like trailers are drag magnets on the open highway. Improved trailer aerodynamics not only saves fuel but also reduces emissions, which is a critical benefit in localities where the cost of noncompliance can put original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and their customers out of business. Truck owners have a strong financial incentive to pressure truck and trailer OEMs to reduce weight and improve fuel efficiency. The article discusses how composites are increasingly providing solutions for both and bring with them secondary benefits that include dent- and corrosion-resistance, noise damping, reduced maintenance and prolonged use life, all of which are critical and have a direct, positive impact on a trucker’s bottom line.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Features: Photos;
  • Pagination: pp 26-31
  • Serial:
    • Composites Technology
    • Volume: 19
    • Issue Number: 3
    • Publisher: Gardner Publications Incorporated
    • ISSN: 1083-4117

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01485127
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 26 2013 12:37PM