Shell Global testing aerodynamic AirFlow Starship truck in cross-country drive
Shell Global is testing AirFlow Starship in a cross-country drive and Tesla should be worried about the latest development involving Big Oil. Shell is working on this project with AirFlow Truck, a company which tested BulletTruck in 2012 with 13.4 mpg. AirFlow Starship has 5,000-watt solar panels which will provide energy for electric components on the truck.
AirFlow Starship features many improvements in design, including aerodynamic features. The truck features open-grill shutters that cool the engine faster. The shutters close automatically when engine cooling isn’t required, thereby reducing drag. With hybrid electric axle system, the truck offers better efficiency compared to other medium and heavy-duty trucks.
As medium and heavy-duty trucks move massive load, they account for nearly 25 percent of transport emissions in the United States. Medium and heavy duty trucks account for only 5 percent of traffic. Tesla’s electric semi-truck isn’t directly competing in this segment but the company could face more competition in near future as big organizations are looking for solutions elsewhere. Tesla has registered strong order book for its electric semi-truck but it also faces competition from Nikola One.
Talking about Shell’s latest venture, Bob Mainwaring, Shell lubricants technology manager for innovation said, "If you're serious about CO2 abatement and energy conservation, you have to take the transport sector seriously."
Shell is still not sure about mileage of AirFlow Starship but Mainwaring expects the heavy-duty truck will break mileage records.
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