Detroit – Participating in this year’s SAE High Efficiency Heavy Duty Vehicles Symposium, Randall Scheps, chairman of the Aluminum Association’s Aluminum Transportation Group (ATG) and Marketing Director, Alcoa Inc., discussed the benefits aluminum provides the industry as it strives to meet first-ever fuel economy regulations for commercial vehicles.
The regulations announced by the Obama Administration last fall and embraced by truck and engine manufacturers, as well as by environmental groups, identify aluminum above all other materials as having the greatest potential to safely reduce vehicle weight, boost fuel economy and cut CO2 emissions.
During his presentation Scheps highlighted research findings that address aluminum weight savings benefits, including:
- Overall Weight Reduction
- Aluminum has the potential of saving up to 3,300 pounds from a vehicle’s weight. Specifically substituting aluminum for roof cabs saves 60 pounds, cab floors save 56 pounds, frame rails save 435 pounds, cab rear walls saves 49 pounds, and cab cross-members saves 38 pounds.
- Fuel Economy Benefits
- Weight reduction can yield a savings as high as 1,612 gallons of diesel fuel each year per vehicle. This equates to nearly one billion gallons of diesel annually for the current U.S. fleet.
- Reduced CO2 Emissions
- Downweighting with aluminum saves up to 17.9 tons of CO2 emissions annually per vehicle. This equates to approximately 10 million tons of CO2per year for the current U.S. fleet.
“Strategic weight reduction with aluminum is a smart business tool that is rising in importance and recognized by truck and engine makers, as well as regulators. The use of aluminum opens an opportunity for the industry to increase fuel economy and efficiency to meet tough new regulations, while providing companies with more profit through greater payload capacity, lower fuel costs, lower maintenance costs and higher resale value. Across the board, aluminum delivers like no other material,” said Scheps.
For a copy of the presentation and more information, visit www.aluminumintransportation.org.
About the Aluminum Transportation Group
The Aluminum Association Inc.’s Aluminum Transportation Group (ATG), communicates the benefits of aluminum in ground transportation applications to help accelerate its penetration through research programs and related outreach activities. The ATG’s mission is to serve member companies and act as a central resource for the automotive and commercial vehicle industries on aluminum issues. Members of the ATG include: Alcoa Inc., Novelis Inc., Rio Tinto Alcan Inc, Aluminum Precision Products Inc., Kaiser Aluminum Corporation, Hydro Aluminum North America and Sapa Group.