Trailer Aerodynamics

A package of measures for improving the aerodynamics of refrigerated semi-trailers, including optimised rear end taper and side skirts.

Results showed a 14% reduction in aerodynamic drag coefficient in modified vehicles.

% fuel saving

7% reduction in fuel consumption at highway speeds

Cost of implementation

Trailers cost £4,500 more than the standard vehicles to produce, with an estimated payback period of 2 years and a lifetime of 10 years.

Implementation strategy

  • Implement now.
  • Designs are available from the research team.
  • First 50 or so trailers have been built by Gray and Adams
  1. Stephens, R. G. and H. Babinsky (2014). Boat-tails for Super-market Lorries. Aerovehicles 1, June. Bordeaux
  2. Midgley, W. J. and D. Cebon (2014). Coast-down Testing of Heavy Goods Vehicles.  Centre for Sustainable Road Freight Technical Report CUED/C-SRF/TR06,ISSN: 2054-4081,University of Cambridge.