On-road truck platooning trial to be held in UK

DHL and DAF Trucks to participate in the $13.14 million trial next year

On-road truck platooning trial to be held in UK
Scania trucks were part of a platooning trial in Sweden last year.


DAF Trucks will participate in a new truck platoon trial to take place in the United Kingdom towards the end of next year.

The UK government has awarded a contract to Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) to carry out the £8.1 million ($13.14m) trial.

The project will be conducted with the help of many stakeholders including, DHL, global engineering consultancy Ricardo, and DAF Trucks – UK market leader of heavy goods vehicle (HGV) sales.

Drawing on information from the previous platooning trials in Europe and the United States, the project will be tailored to specific UK road requirements.

The trial will gather information and then collate the evidence to independently analyse platooning under "real-world operational conditions".

TRL states come of the key aspects of the trial will be to understand issues such as fuel efficiency, reduced emissions, safety, acceptance by drivers and other road users, implications for future infrastructure, and the commercial case for adoption.

Check out our coverage of Scania’s platoon trial in Sweden

"Platooning technology has the potential to deliver a wide range of benefits to all road users," TRL academy director Richard Cuerden says.

"As well as supporting the Department for Transport and Highways England in informing future infrastructure investments and policy decisions, the trials will highlight the services that platooning may offer road users and whether these can safely contribute to a reduction in vehicle emissions, improved journeys and greater economic prosperity."

The coming months will see driving simulations, driver training and test track trial to prepare for the final run, which will form part of DHL’s regular logistical operations.

"The UK has an unprecedented opportunity to lead the world in trialling connected vehicle platoons in a real-world environment," TRL chief executive Rob Wallis says.

"TRL and its consortium of leading international partners, have the practical and technical knowledge gained from previous projects to understand what is required to put a connected vehicle platoon on to UK roads safely.

"The team are now taking that expertise and uniquely applying it within live traffic operations."

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