With platooning, trucks save fuel by driving in the slipstream of the truck in front of them. Platooning is a system that allows multiple vehicles to drive very close behind each other without compromising safety.
This evolution of logistics is made possible by the exchange of sensor data between vehicles. The exchange of data creates an electronic drawbar through which the “platoon” is digitally linked to each other. The vehicles drive in column and the rest time of the drivers increases. In the Fraunhofer Blockchain Lab, students develop a platooning prototype.
There is high demand among logistics companies for applications that save fuel. Additional money can be earned by saving driving time. In the future, built-in digital wallets will pay each other with digital currencies. The Fraunhofer Blockchain Lab is using the cryptocurrency IOTA for this purpose. IOTA is a network that can be used to transfer data and monetary values. It is a further development of blockchain technology and has significant advantages over conventional payment systems.
- No transaction fees
- Low energy consumption
- Automated micropayments
Platooning – or flocking – is better for the environment and saves resources in logistics. Haulage companies face considerable challenges in addition to the difficult traffic situation, CO₂ pricing and digitalization. Digitalizing internal communication, fleet management and accident reports is a start. Connected driving or semi-autonomous truck platooning are still being explored, but at full speed. Demand for fuel-saving applications will definitely increase.
Technological leap with truck platooning and open source technology IOTA
I remember the time when trucks drove without the curved attachment above the driver’s cab. The parts improved aerodynamics so much that the inventor made millions with them. Today, not too many trucks drive “topless.” Since that time, I have wished I could invent something similar. The improvement by this new technological leap including the open source cryptocurrency IOTA should be at least as impactful. If this telematics application catches on, the impact will be more like a factor of 10x.
What is Platooning?
Platooning is a system for road traffic that allows two or more vehicles to drive very close together without compromising safety.
What are the benefits of platooning?
- Platooning saves fuel by allowing trucks to drive safely in the slipstream of other trucks.
- Connected driving extends drivers’ rest time.