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Why We’re Investing in the Future of Transportation and Fuel Efficiency

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peloton transportation automation investment

Changes in the way we drive and the way we transport goods are on the road to becoming a reality. Most notably, self-driving vehicles are getting plenty of media attention. From driverless Uber cars to prototypes under development at Google, Tesla, and a host of car manufacturers, you’ll rarely go a day without hearing about it.

The shipping and transportation industry is also poised for a shakeup. Completely driverless semi-trucks are in development, but other exciting elements of autonomous trucking are set to debut this year.

Breakthrough®Fuel is proud to be investing in and partnering with a leading innovator in this space, Peloton Technology of Mountain View, California.

The big news last month was that Peloton had raised $60 million in Series B funding from a group of investors including Wisconsin-based Breakthrough®Fuel and U.S. Venture. Peloton is using the funds it raised to rollout exciting new transportation technology in 2017 and to support growth plans as it develops other transportation automation advancements. (Read the official press release)

What Peloton Does and Why It Matters

Peloton specializes in a concept known as truck platooning or coupling. It enables a pair of semis to connect electronically, syncing with each other using wireless Vehicle-to-Vehicle (V2V) communication so that braking and acceleration happen in unison. Steering in both vehicles remains manual.

Peloton’s Network Operations Center (NOC) is another way these trucks are connected. The NOC notifies drivers when a potential pairing is nearby based on GPS location and planned route so that coupling can occur. Find out more about how it works and watch an explainer video at Peloton-tech.com.

Volvo trucks with platooning technology (Courtesy: peloton-tech.com)

Benefits of Platooning: Transportation Fuel Efficiency

One of the most important advantages of truck platooning involves significant diesel fuel savings.  Platooning reduces the amount of aerodynamic drag on both the leading and trailing trucks, which helps conserve fuel.

Using Peloton, a trailing semi-truck is estimated to experience as much as 10% fuel savings while the lead truck would save 4.5% for a combined diesel savings of at least 7%.

This is a cost-saving benefit that can be integrated into your transportation fuel management strategy. It also promotes sustainability as it will help cut down on greenhouse gas emissions.

The fuel saving benefits of platooning make the perfect partner to our Fuel Recovery program, especially for organizations operating private fleets. While Breakthrough®Fuel ensures shippers pay a fair price for diesel, Peloton’s technology can help you get the most out of that fuel.

Breakthrough®Fuel helps clients remove millions of gallons of fuel from their supply chains every year. Combined with Peloton’s fuel efficiency benefits, shippers could improve overall sustainability efforts even further.

Both Breakthrough®Fuel and Peloton provide transportation data that will guide shippers in developing new strategies for making supply chains more efficient.

Illustration of aerodynamic drag reduction (Courtesy: peloton-tech.com)

Benefits of Platooning: Transportation Safety

Peloton will be making highways everywhere a safer place for everyone. Platooning technology has been shown to reduce the likelihood of crashes, which Peloton does in a few different ways:

  • Forward-looking cameras provide real-time display for both drivers in a platoon.
  • Radar-based collision prevention system sees what human eyes can’t.
  • The system reacts more quickly, accurately, and reliably than manual driving.
  • Reduces accidents caused by driver fatigue and other risk factors.

The safety features of this system make the fuel saving benefits possible. Pairs of trucks are able to travel closely enough together to take advantage of improved aerodynamics when the smart technology provides automated braking, acceleration, and collision mitigation.

Peloton only allows for truck platooning when traffic, road, and weather conditions are appropriate.

A Shared Mission and Shared Values

At Breakthrough®Fuel, our goal is to provide transparency in transportation while ensuring shippers pay a fair price for the fuel that brings their goods to market. We take pride in finding ways to help our clients improve supply chain efficiency, and Peloton is striving to do much the same thing.

There’s something else that attracted Breakthrough®Fuel to this innovative company.

“Our organizations both believe in challenging the status quo and moving the industry forward,” says Breakthrough®Fuel’s founder and CEO, Craig Dickman. “We’re extremely excited to be playing a role in Peloton’s growth, and we can’t wait to see what the future holds.”

There may be quite a few questions surrounding what that future will look like, but other things are also becoming clear. With companies like Peloton and Breakthrough®Fuel leading the charge, our roads will be safer, our planet will be cleaner, and transportation costs will become accurate and fair for all parties involved.

Interested in learning more about the energy management services that Breakthrough®Fuel provides? Contact us today or call 920-617-3070 to speak with someone at our headquarters in Green Bay.

Discover more of what Peloton is capable of when you watch the video below. Stay tuned to the Breakthrough®Fuel blog for updates and like us on Facebook to stay connected. You can also like Peloton on Facebook to get the latest from them.

 

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