Cummins, Peterbilt Partner on Fuel-Efficient Tech for SuperTruck II


Cummins Inc., which designs, manufactures, distributes and services diesel and natural gas engines and related technologies, says that it will partner with Peterbilt Motors Co., a division of PACCAR, to develop and demonstrate technologies under the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) SuperTruck II program.

“Cummins, and the entire team, is focused on developing technologies that can transform the industry and help our customers be more successful while continuing to be great stewards of the environment. Combining some of the best technical minds available for this project, I am confident that we can reach our goals and deliver results that are a win for our customers, a win for our organizations and a win for the environment,” said Wayne Eckerle, Cummins’ vice president of research and technology.

“Our engineers are focused on improving engine efficiency, aerodynamics and other systems technologies to meet greenhouse-gas [GHG] requirements for model years 2021, 2024 and 2027,” said Darrin Siver, Peterbilt’s general manager and PACCAR vice president.

Subject to appropriations, the DOE will fund four projects to develop and demonstrate cost-effective technologies that more than double the freight efficiency of Class 8 trucks, commonly known as 18-wheelers, over the 2009 baseline. The goal of the program is to accelerate the pace of reductions in petroleum consumption and GHG emissions of the nation’s freight transportation system.

Cummins says it will develop and demonstrate 55% or greater engine Brake Thermal Efficiency at a 65-mile-per-hour cruise condition, and the full team will demonstrate a greater than 100% improvement in vehicle Freight-Ton Economy (FTE) over the 2009 baseline vehicle.

“These investments will accelerate the development of innovative vehicle technologies that will save businesses and consumers money at the pump, cut carbon emissions and strengthen our economy,” said Acting Assistant Secretary David Friedman. “SuperTruck II builds on the successful SuperTruck I program, which has already led to more than 20 fuel-saving technologies that have reached the commercial market.”

Cummins and Peterbilt worked together for SuperTruck I, where their demonstration tractor-trailer averaged a 76% increase in drive cycle FTE and a 43% reduction in GHG emissions versus a 2009 baseline truck – all significant improvements.

The full team of project partners includes Peterbilt, Eaton and Bridgestone. Other key suppliers, labs and universities making critical contributions toward the project goals include Great Dane, Exa Corp., Meritor, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Purdue University. The team’s customer council, led by Walmart Transportation LLC, will provide important information on routes, technology needs and critical market input, aimed at fostering more rapid market adoption of SuperTruck technologies.

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