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Prime Mover Magazine

Scania Transport Laboratory goes fossil free

Swedish commercial vehicle manufacturer, Scania, has demonstrated through its in-house haulier how carbon emission reductions by more than 95 per cent can be achieved with existing technology.

Scania’s Transport Laboratory is reportedly used for some of the manufacturer’s internal transport. The operations comprise 45 trucks and coaches, of which 14 are tractors for long distance transport. As of 2018, the fleet runs only on fossil free* fuel and hybrid drive which reduces carbon emissions by more than 95 percent.

It was founded 2008 as an extension of the company’s research and development department in an effort to learn even more about its customers’ challenges and how profitability can be improved. Already in its first five years the lab reduced fuel consumption by 20 per cent and carbon emissions by 50 per cent per transported tonne.

“This is about practising what we preach,” said Scania Transport Laboratory Head, Jan Björklund. “We are not asking our customers and the industry in general to do something we are not willing to do ourselves.”

Every day, the Scania Transport Laboratory operates 14 truck and trailer combinations between the manufacturing plants in Södertälje, Sweden, and Zwolle in the Netherlands. Over the course of a year, each truck is driven for approximately 400,000 kilometres, which is about three times as much as a truck would run in the same time in an average haulier operation. That means the Lab offers a uniquely quick opportunity for Scania to test and assess vehicle quality and performance. Equally important is to test theories about flow analysis and planning as means to remove waste from the transport system, as well as driver training.

“One of the key learnings for us is the effect of planning and driver training. We see that it works and that fairly small adjustments have big impact. For example, reducing the speed from 90 to 80 km/h in the long haul operations reduces fuel by 10 percent whilst the comparative time loss is only 1 percent,” said Björklund.

*Scania is not at 100 per cent fossil free fuel in the operation as there is a lack of HVO/biodiesel fuel stations outside Sweden which means that some trucks sometimes have to refuel with regular diesel.

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