SAF-Holland responds to electrification trend

Equipment specialist, SAF-Holland, has unveiled two new electric axles that are designed for the transport world of tomorrow.

The SAF TRAKr (main image) and SAF TRAKe (image below) relies on recuperation of energy to lower emissions and fuel consumption of equipped vehicles. Also, SAF TRAKe utilises stored energy to support the main drive of a prime mover which is ideal for difficult road conditions.

The recuperation process transforms motion energy of the vehicle into electrical energy that is stored in a lithium-ion battery, which powers auxiliary units in the trailer such as heaters, tail lifts, pumps or cooling systems. Recuperation, according to the equipment specialist, is an additional source of power generation that saves fuel while reducing noise pollution and exhaust emissions from the vehicle.

Planned legal regulations across Europe has stimulated research and development in decarbonisation and ‘zero emission’ fleets.

“Partially or fully electric commercial vehicles are a perfect solution for these requirements,” said SAF-Holland Head of Pre-Development, Olaf Drewes. “With regard to noise and exhaust emissions, the new axles work towards supporting the legal requirements of tomorrow. This also applies to the challenges of inner-city deliveries at night, for example for the transport of chilled goods.”

SAF-Holland provides its customers with an overall system that features an optimal combination of operational strategy and quality components. In addition to the electric axle and power electronics, the package also includes the battery system and control unit.

“For trailer manufacturers and vehicle operators, this means that the system operates smoothly without competence problems at interfaces,” said Drewes.

According to SAF-Holland, trailer manufacturers can install trailer axles quickly and easily while using existing, standard interfaces. The equipment specialist notes that maintenance is simple and cost-efficient as the drive unit does not have to be removed for the uninstallation of the hub unit and wheels.

Wear parts such as brake pads or brake discs are identical to the non-driven axle components from SAF-Holland which simplifies the OEM’s spare parts supply. SAF-Holland will also offer a service and training concept which is specially adapted to the electric axles.

Trailer axles with electric generator and electric drive SAF TRAKr uses a high-voltage generator module (400V) for electric recuperation. The new electric axle is primarily intended for refrigerated vehicles: It allows cooling units to be temporarily operated with only electric power. This prevents or reduces noise and exhaust emissions while also extending the service life of the cooling unit components.

In addition to recuperation, SAF TRAKe, the trailer axle with auxiliary electric drive (maximum 147kW), supports the main drive of the prime mover on hills and on difficult terrain.

“Bringing the electric drive into the trailer as well has great benefits for traction and stability,” said Drewes.

The electric axles from SAF-Holland have a modular design and are equipped with standardised interfaces, allowing them to meet all customer requirements in the different variants. The axles will be available with the electric modules with 50kW or 147kW and also with:

  • different disc brakes and drum brakes for 19.5” and 22.5” tyres.
  • different air suspensions such as SAF INTRA or SAF MODUL.
  • different wheel connections and offsets for single and twin tyres.

The two axles are designed for axle loads from 9-12 tonnes.

In other news: SAF-Holland’s CEO, Detlef Borghardt, spoke to Global Trailer about the equipment specialist’s comprehensive vision of the future in the lead-up to the 2018 IAA Commercial Vehicles Show.

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