Hybrid propulsion of tractor-semitrailer combinations

Since last year, HAN-AR joins the industrial E-Trailer project, aiming at electrically powered driving support at the semitrailer, to reduce the total fuel consumption of the tractor-semitrailer combination. Initiative was taken by Kraker Trailers, working together with van Klink Engineering, a number of transport companies, Hogeschool Zeeland and HAN-AR. It is the task of HAN-AR to design and realize the controller.



In addition to the staff of HAN-AR, the project is joined by a master student, and recently (starting in February) a group of 8 bachelor students. This group includes expertise in powertrain, vehicle technology and control, all being necessary ingredients for the project.

Part of the work is getting practical data on the performance of existing conventional vehicle combinations  during representative drive cycles where GPS data and CAN-data from tractor and between tractor and trailer has been collected. These data serve for :


  • validation of the E-Trailer performance on the bass of present control and vehicle models
  • estimation of the potential performance of the E-Trailer system, directly from the actual field test results of the conventional combinations
  • enhance the understanding of possible critical issues regarding safety and performance
  • preparation of the system implementation and prototype test plan


Some impression of the work-in-progress on the instrumentation is shown in the picture. The work was carried out successfully by the students, assisting Gerben Koerhuis (HAN) and Michel van Klink and with great help of the hosting transport companies, Bosman Transport and Wielemaker BV Transport- & Container company.  

Bron: HAN Automotive Research