Breakthrough Invests in Silicon Valley Startup
May 16, 2017
Breakthrough, a Green Bay-based company working in transportation energy management, recently made an investment in a Silicon Valley startup.
Peloton Technology, of Mountain View, is working on a “platooning” platform which uses automated vehicle technology to sync two semi-trucks, so that both vehicles’ braking and acceleration happen simultaneously.
The startup says this system has been found to reduce diesel fuel costs by 7 percent by leveraging vehicle-to-vehicle -- V2V -- communication. This is just one type of autonomous vehicle communication that the American Transportation Research Institute outlined in its 2016 report on the impact of automated vehicles on the trucking industry.
Others include vehicle-to-infrastructure, or V2I, in which the vehicle can communicate with and gain awareness of things like traffic signals and other fixtures. Vehicle-to-pedestrian, or V2P, involves the vehicle communicating directly with pedestrians and bicyclists.
Alongside partner investor U.S. Venture, Breakthrough took part in a $60 million Series B funding round for Peloton earlier this spring. Craig Dickman, founder and CEO of Breakthrough, says Peloton’s technology “will bring about plenty of positive change.”
In 2016, Breakthrough helped clients save more than 6.3 million gallons of fuel and reduce their collective carbon footprint by over 75,000 metric tons of CO2.
“It’s exciting that our company here in Wisconsin has discovered a new way to invest in the future of the industry by connecting and working with another trailblazing organization,” Dickman added.
Peloton’s driver-assisted platooning technology aims to bring down costs for trucking companies, but it also can reduce the risk of accidents, the company says. The system features forward-looking cameras, as well as radar-based collision prevention.
Dickman says “transportation is evolving quickly,” and recent actions on the part of national government agencies and business leaders support that notion.
In 2016, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced a 10-year, nearly $4 billion investment supporting “pilot projects” for developing autonomous vehicle technology.
Uber is also testing autonomous vehicles in certain U.S. cities. And major auto manufacturers like Ford and General Motors are pouring money into automated vehicle research, as well as buying smaller tech companies that support AV development.
Breakthrough is a groundbreaking energy management company, helping shippers around the world achieve transparency and remove distortion from their transportation supply chains. Using patented strategies and expert industry insights to improve supply chain efficiency, Breakthrough cuts energy costs and consumption while reducing emissions. In 2016, Breakthrough helped its clients save more than 6.3 million gallons of fuel and reduced their collective carbon footprint by more than 75 thousand metric tons of CO2. The firm has received the prestigious “Winning Through Innovation” award from Unilever and is a five-time recipient of Procter & Gamble’s “External Business Partner Excellence Award.” Learn more at www.breakthroughfuel.com.
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