Holistic Simulation

The idea of the holistic simulation approach is to simulate the whole driveline of the Transformers Truck/Trailer in one model, including environment information, aerodynamic effects and hybrid-on-demand (HoD) components.
In a first step, a MATLAB/Simulink model was created to test most of the components and their interactions. The parameterisation of the components, especially the drive axle ratio, was also a big issue at this stage of the project.

The next step was to switch the simulation platform. To include also components that where created with other simulation tools than Simulink, the model was built in AVL Model.CONNECT, which uses the co-simulation platform ICOS.
With this platform it is possible to connect and simulate models that where developed with different simulation tools. The setup for the model is shown in the figure below. 


By assigning different components to a parameter, it is possible to switch theses components between several simulations, without changing the actual model. This means that the Management System, the Transmission, the Energy Storage Units or the Route Profiles can be replaced by changing the specific parameter. Thus, a larger amount of variations can be archived within a shorter time.

There is also a focus on the variation of:     

  • Payload (empty, average, full)     
  • Aerodynamic Shape     
  • Traffic Profile (low, average, high)     
  • Max. Electric Motor Power (12 kW – 120 kW)     
  • Battery Capacity (5 kWh – 25 kWh) 



The simulations will be done for four different strategies:     

  • A conventional truck/trailer model without HoD components     
  • A model with an electric motor and a battery inside the trailer, controlled by a trailer driveline management system     
  • A model with an electric motor and two energy storage units (a battery and a supercapacitor) inside the trailer, controlled by a vehicle energy management system   
  • A model with an electric motor and a battery inside the trailer. This model is implemented as a Plug-In Hybrid  


HoD Trailer awarded [SCB]
TRANSFORMERS Final Conference


Facts & Figures

  • Full name: Configurable and Adaptable Trucks and Trailers for Optimal Transport Efficiency
  • Duration: 4 years
  • Start date: 1 September 2013
  • Total budget: 7.9 M€
  • EC Funding: 5.2 M€


  • Develop and demonstrate Hybrid-on-Demand Driveline for Truck-trailer Combination
  • Develop innovative complete vehicle aerodynamic measures
  • Develop innovative loading efficiency measures