In Europe, Volvo now offers its I-See system, which reduces fuel consumption for long-distance transport by up to 5%. The four individuals responsible for developing the solution are set to receive the Volvo Technology Award for 2013.
I-See could be compared with an autopilot that handles gear-changes, throttle and brakes on gradients in the most fuel-efficient manner possible.
The first time a truck equipped with I-See drives on a hilly road, the topography information is stored in the truck for the next trip, and a wireless dispatch is also conveyed to a central server. When another truck equipped with I-See is about to drive the same stretch, the system will automatically obtain the information from the server and ensure that the hills are negotiated in the best possible manner the first time.
“I-See utilizes the vehicle’s kinetic energy to accelerate at the right time prior to the ascent to reduce the number of downshifts, while disengaging the vehicle just before reaching the brow of the hill and utilizes the energy perfectly for braking down the next hill,” explains Anders Eriksson, who headed the development group.
Other winners are Johan Bjernetun, Henrik Andersson and Johan Axelsson. The prize will be presented on April 4 by Olof Persson, president and CEO, in conjunction with AB Volvo’s Annual General Meeting.
When asked if this technology might make its way across the Atlantic to North America, Brandon Borgna, a Volvo spokesperson said: "We continue to look at leveraging some of the innovative technologies introduced with the new FH in Europe for our conventional products in North America.'