Wabash National Corp. has unveiled its prototype composite refrigerated van, which utilizes its new, proprietary molded structural composite technology. In refrigerated van trailer and truck body applications, the molded structural composite technology provides up to 25% improvement in thermal performance and is up to 20% lighter, compared to conventional designs, while significantly improving puncture and damage resistance, the company explained. In addition, the molded structural composite floor systems support higher floor ratings—up to 24,000 lbs. in the refrigerated van trailer.
“What this means for our customers is improved thermal efficiency, reduced fuel costs, increased payload and cargo capacity, optimized utilization and enhanced durability,” said Brent Yeagy, Wabash’s group president for commercial trailer products.
Molded structural composites are used in a wide range of applications, including aerospace, automotive, marine and commercial construction. This is the first time the technology is being used in trailer and truck body manufacturing.
“The way we’re using molded structural composites in our patent-pending engineering designs overcomes the structural deficiencies of previous composite designs in refrigerated transportation,” Yeagy added. “We believe it has the potential to advance the cold chain market in the same way DuraPlate transformed dry van trailers.”