Bigger, again, and better
Believe it or not, next year will be the fourth instalment of the annual Truck Test event … Time sure does fly when you’re having a blast! This chapter will, however, deliver some scientific déjà vu.
Déjà vu, from French, which literally means “already seen”, is the phenomenon of having the strong sensation that an event, currently being experienced, has been experienced in the past … Although Truck Test 2015 will shine the spotlight on extra-heavy commercial vehicles (EHCVs) once more, as we explained last month, this time round the test will be more stringent – so as to return the most accurate figures possible.
Martin Dammann, a managing member at Hellberg Transport Management (HTM), adds: “With Truck Test 2014 barely done and dusted, the preparation for next year’s test of EHCVs is well under way. The last time we tested this category of vehicles was in 2012, which was also the first instalment of what has now become an annual event in the industry – and one which is being taken very seriously by the truck manufacturers.”
He says that HTM is particularly pleased to be working with the same partners again; FOCUS, Engen, Ctrack and Adrian van Tonder from Barloworld Transport, with each playing a vital role in contributing towards the integrity of the overall results.
Dammann continues: “Over the last three years we have learnt how important it is to ensure that all measurements are done accurately and in an unbiased manner, as there is much at stake for the participants.”
The HTM team will, once again, be responsible for compiling the test results – which will report on the technical specifications of the vehicles, the payload, fuel consumption, average speed and payload productivity.
Dammann points out that Van Tonder will supervise the loading of palletised cement pockets, at AfriSam, to ensure that the rigs are all loaded to the same gross combination mass. “The truck tractors and trailers, from Afrit and GRW, will be weighed empty and laden so that we can calculate accurate payloads for each combination,” he notes.
“As with previous tests, we will be using our TransSolve software to predict the performance of the trucks and then use the actual results to improve our simulation algorithm,” explains Dammann. “This is also a good opportunity for us to review all the data supplied by the vehicle manufacturers to ensure that the details in our TransSolve database are correct and up to date.”
He adds that Engen will assist HTM with the fuel recordings and checking that the refuelling is always to the same level on a sight glass, which will be fitted to the outside of the fuel tanks.
Eugene van Niekerk, business development manager at Ctrack Fleet Management, points out that the company will be providing telematics information to the event’s organisers once more. “As in the past, Ctrack will be validating the departure, travelling and stopping times of all participants as well as the distances and average speeds.”
He adds that Ctrack will also be providing fuel consumption information recorded from the onboard computers of participants’ vehicles, through the CANBus J1939 interface. “This will provide valuable insight during the event to both participants and organisers.”
The company will also provide live feed to all the participants via the Ctrack Online monitoring software, which will allow them to view the progress of their own as well as the other vehicles.
“Ctrack Online allows real-time updates and a Google map view of the route and the progress of the vehicles,” Van Niekerk points out. “Once again the Ctrack tachograph information will be provided on all vehicles. This will show the driving style of each vehicle over the duration of the event.”
He explains that the tachograph information shows graphically both road and engine speed values for each vehicle and provides valuable insight into average speeds, maximum speeds and stops on route. He adds: “Ctrack is proud to be associated with Truck Test 2015 and is looking forward to another successful event.”
We definitely share this sentiment!