The world of transport is fast moving towards one that is powered by automation and smart mobility, assisted by the latest technological advances and an increasing focus on driver experience and safety. Truck platooning plays a key role in this future scenario.
Since its launch in 2018, the H2020 innovation action ENSEMBLE (ENabling SafE Multi-Brand Platooning for Europe) has been working to pave the way for the adoption of multi-brand truck platooning in Europe.
ENSEMBLE is intently focused on developing (European) standards, centering its activities on the harmonisation of multi-brand specifications. One of the main project aims is creating a multi-brand V2V communication protocol.
As part of the vision the project has defined two different platooning levels: platooning as an autonomous function and platooning as a support function. The latter will be implemented and demonstrated throughout the ENSEMBLE project lifecycle. Recently, the project’s Steering Committee dedicated a meeting on ensuring that ENSEMBLE’s objectives and expected benefits match the actual workflow and findings of the project.
The support function, in a first step towards autonomous platooning, will produce validated specifications; using V2X technology that ensures direct communication between all the trucks in a platoon, supporting the driver in safe speed and distance keeping. It also provides information to truck drivers in advance, allowing them to be more aware of road events. Drivers can hence have faster reactions in potentially dangerous braking situations, in addition to the possibility of coordinated braking manoeuvres amongst trucks involved in the platoon. Consequently, this increased safety of the trucks results in turn in increased road safety in general.
The ENSEMBLE consortium is proud to include all European OEMs, with affiliates at a global level, working together towards this same objective. The project is being implemented in the context of the European Commission’s strategy and vision to improve mobility, both reducing emissions (Long Term Strategy 2050) and fatalities on the road (Vision Zero).