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The full report, (PDF, 2.06 MB), is available as a PDF. This document contains confidential information that is proprietary to NRC’s Centre for Surface Transportation Technology.No part of its contents may be used, copied, disclosed or conveyed to any party in any manner, in whole or in part, whatsoever without prior written permission from NRC’s Centre for Surface Transportation Technology.A study concluded that the percentage contribution of pressure drag on the baseline vehicle was 93.3% whereas the contribution of pressure drag on the LCV was 91.7%.The significance of this is that as vehicle length increases, strategies to reduce friction drag become more effective in reducing fuel consumption.Where applicable, any barriers to entry within the Canadian trucking community were explained to separate those technologies which could likely be used to those that would likely never gain widespread acceptance due to operational barriers For heavy vehicles such as tractor-trailer combinations and buses, pressure drag is the dominant component due to the large surfaces facing the main flow direction and due to the large wake resulting from the bluntness of the back end of such vehicles.Although friction drag occurs along the external surfaces of heavy vehicles, particularly along the sides and top of buses and trailers, its contribution to overall drag is small (10% or less) and is not a strong candidate for drag-reduction technologies.
The literature review evaluates the fuel consumption and GHG reduction potential of aerodynamic enhancement devices for tractor-trailer combinations and intercity busses.The report serves to aid in identifying potential knowledge gaps about the performance of these devices in Canada.The recommendations included in the report by the NRC are for deliberative purposes only, and do not necessarily reflect Transport Canada’s position or views in the subject.Pertinent information relating to drag reduction was extracted from sources and summarized in this report.
In general, the authors attempted to explain each technology or product and present or calculate the expected potential reduction in drag coefficient for a typical highway vehicle.Ideally, a study could be conducted whereby a variety of gap fillers, side skirts and boat tails are sequentially added to the LCV in order to determine if the effects of these devices on LCVs is similar to their effect on conventional vehicles.