Shell Lubricants, AirFlow Truck to develop StarShip

Shell Lubricants, AirFlow Truck to develop ‘hyper-fuel milage’ tractor

Shell Lubricants is partnering with AirFlow Truck Co. owner and designer, Bob Sliwa, to develop a new hyper-fuel mileage Class 8 tractor trailer, announced the two companies Thursday evening, March 26, as part of MATS. This next-generation concept truck, nicknamed the StarShip, will feature a completely new design with the aim of breaking current fuel efficiency records for Class 8 trucks. Shell and AirFlow expect the truck to make its debut in 2017.

“This is an exciting project for Shell that allows us to remain at the leading edge of technology development, energy efficiency and sustainability,” said Selda Gunsel, vice-president of technology for Shell Global Solutions. “The transportation industry is dynamic and we intend to stay at the forefront of innovation—collaborating with companies like AirFlow to develop creative solutions that will benefit the industry for years to come.”

The pursuit of significant fuel economy gains for Class 8 trucks and trailers is a challenging process given the size and traditional construction of a tractor and trailer. With new fuel economy regulations on the horizon and the need for continuing advances in fuel economy, Shell Lubricants recognizes that a holistic approach to making fuel economy gains is important. This includes advances in engine and drive train technology, the use of low viscosity synthetic lubricants, aerodynamic designs, efficient driving methods and more.

“During our continuous on-highway testing of Shell Rotella engine oils and other lubricants, we always seek to understand how efficiencies can be gained across the whole truck,” said Chris Guerrero, global brand manager for Shell Rotella. “Aerodynamics plays a big role in achieving higher fuel economy and we look forward to working with Bob Sliwa and AirFlow Truck Co. on the evolution of an all-new hyper fuel mileage tractor and trailer”

Initial designs call for the StarShip tractor and trailer to join together into a single integrated unit. This will solve the problem of having a gap between the tractor and trailer, which is a big source of aerodynamic drag and loss of efficiency, AirFlow’s Sliwa said. The tractor and trailer will also feature newly designed side skirts, hood, front end and custom interior. The tractor to trailer Active Aerodynamics gap sealer and the trailer skirts will all retract below 35 MPH or when coming up on obstructions such as a railroad crossing.

The Shell Lubricants team will provide technical consultation on engine and drivetrain components and recommendations for lubricant needs for use in the StarShip truck. As the industry prepares for the next generation of diesel engine oils, currently designated as PC-11, the ability to work with AirFlow Truck Co. gives Shell Lubricants the opportunity to align with an innovator in truck design and allows it to explore the limits of fuel efficiency.

Learn more about the project at www.rotella.com.

You May Also Like

International Truck integrates S13 engine with Allison automatic transmissions

Allison 3414 Regional Haul Series, 4000 Series fully automatic transmissions available for International RH, HX Series trucks, respectively.

International-Truck-S-13-Engine-Allison-Transmission-integration

Allison Transmission announced that International Truck integrated Allison fully automatic transmissions into S13-equipped trucks. The Allison 3414 Regional Haul Series (RHS) is now available to order in International RH trucks equipped with the S13 engine. Additionally, the Allison 4000 Series is also available to order with S13-equipped International HX trucks.

Volvo announces plans for hydrogen ICE trucks on-road testing

Customer tests for Volvo hydrogen combustion engine trucks will start in 2026, with orders starting by the end of the decade.

Volvo-Hydrogen-ICE-rendering
ATA Truck Tonnage Index declines 1.2%

ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello cites continued market softness, potentially leading to reduced industry capacity.

transprotation-market-generic
Navistar releases decarbonization update in 2023 sustainability report

Navistar said the report also looks at its commitment to sustainability through environmental initiatives, human rights due diligence and more.

Navistar-2023-sustainability-report
Scania opens orders for autonomous mining trucks

Scania’s 40-tonne autonomous heavy tipper for mining available to order, and the 50-tonne model to follow shortly afterwards.

Scania-autonomous-mining-truck

Other Posts

FTR: Truck orders exceed recent trends in May; vocational sales stand out

Not only are orders up m/m and y/y, FTR said this level is above recent demand trends and 2% above the average for May over the past decade.

FTR-May-Preliminary-Class-8-orders
PACCAR MX-13 CARB compliant engine available in Peterbilt 579, 567, 589

The PACCAR MX-13 diesel engine meets the CARB Omnibus Regulation and is available in high performance or efficiency focused ratings.

Cummins, PACCAR, Daimler Truck N.A. complete joint venture formation

The completed joint venture is now known as Amplify Cell Technologies.

Accelera-Daimler-Paccar
FTR sees rise in April trailer orders

With 13,016 units sold, April saw 9% m/m and 45% y/y gains. However, trailer orders were still 20% below the average for the last 12 months.

FTR-april-trailer-orders-chart