Energy-Intensive Analysis of Truck Transportation

by Balakrishnamurthy Ashtakala, (M.ASCE), Planning Studies Engr.; Alberta Highways and Transport, Government of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada,

Serial Information: Transportation Engineering Journal of ASCE, 1975, Vol. 101, Issue 2, Pg. 225-236

Document Type: Journal Paper


The efficient use of gasoline and diesel fuels in transportation is a step in the direction of conservation of the nonrenewable resource. The energy-intensive analysis presented in this paper develops the concept of energy efficiency in truck transportation and examines its economic implications. Theoretically, energy efficiency (payload, in ton miles per British thermal units) tends to have an upper limit corresponding to the maximum gross vehicle weight allowed under a set of vehicle weight regulations. Energy efficiencies of tractor semitrailers and tractor trailers in Alberta are reasonable, whereas the energy efficiencies of straight trucks are significantly lower by comparison. The benefit in terms of saving fuel by an incremental increase in energy efficiency could result in a corresponding economic benefit if the payload hauled by a truck could be increased by more efficient operation.

Subject Headings: Energy efficiency | Transportation studies | Trucks | Economic factors | Payloads | Energy consumption | Gasoline | Thermal power | Alberta | Canada

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