The American Trucking Association’s Annual Management Conference & Exhibition – Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT), the largest trucking company in West Texas and New Mexico, is continuing to make advances in fuel efficiency by equipping all new trailers with the FlowBelow Trailer AeroSlider™ system. The AeroSlider is a patented aerodynamic system designed to address the complex aerodynamic drag created by the trailer wheels and suspension. The system is designed to complement and provide additional fuel savings when used with other trailer-mounted aerodynamic devices such as trailer side skirts.
Royal Jones, CEO of Mesilla Valley Transportation, is serious about his approach toward fuel efficiency. According to Jones, “MVT was an early adopter of FlowBelow’s first product, the Tractor AeroKit, when it was introduced in 2014. Since then the company has begun working with every major truck OEM to offer the product from the factory on new trucks. The AeroSlider is something I expect will follow a similar trend, and it’s the next logical step forward to improving trailer aerodynamics. In a few years, you’ll see these installed on hundreds of thousands of trailers all across North America.”
The Trailer AeroSlider represents a new category in trailer aerodynamics. Instead of attaching to the body of the trailer, the system is mounted directly to the sliding trailer suspension and travels with the suspension. The AeroSlider consists of multiple components including ‘quick-release’ wheel covers, fairings positioned between and behind the trailer wheels, and aerodynamic mud flaps behind them.
The AeroSlider has been tested using computational fluid dynamics, SAE J1321 type II fuel economy testing, and rolling-floor wind tunnel testing. The system has also been verified by 3rd party fuel economy testing conducted by MVT Solutions. The fuel savings of the AeroSlider Stage 1 and Stage 2 system ranges from 1.37% to 2.07%, respectively. MVT will begin implementing the Stage 1 AeroSlider on all new trailers effective immediately – but plans to implement the Stage 2 system beginning in 2020.
“The decision by MVT to go with the AeroSlider was a major milestone for FlowBelow,” said Josh Butler, CEO of FlowBelow Aero. “MVT has a dry van fleet which has lower than industry average trailer utilization. Even with a relatively high trailer to tractor ratio we were able to make a strong business case for MVT to add the product based on proven fuel savings. Based on the excellent ROI of the AeroSlider and the fact that the system works in conjunction with other trailer aerodynamic products, we believe that the Trailer AeroSlider has the potential for achieving widespread adoption within the next few years.”
About FlowBelow Aero Inc.: FlowBelow is a Texas-based aerodynamics company founded by mechanical and aerospace engineers. Their product development process includes advanced computational fluid dynamics modeling and extensive interaction with fleet mechanics and drivers to ensure the products provide utility, efficiency, and profitability for fleets. FlowBelow’s products are manufactured in the USA and have fuel savings verified by third party SAE Type II fuel economy testing. For more information please visit www.flowbelow.com.
About MVT: Located in Las Cruces, New Mexico, and El Paso, Texas, Mesilla Valley Transportation operates a fleet of 1,500 tractors and 5,000 trailers. The company began as a small fleet of three trucks in 1981 hauling primarily refrigerated/perishable goods in the Southwest. Mesilla Valley Transportation is now the largest locally-owned trucking company in the West Texas and Southern New Mexico area. MVT specializes in time-sensitive freight transportation between major manufacturing areas in the US, and from border to border. Throughout its ongoing effort to improve efficiency, MVT has adopted numerous fuel-saving technologies and implemented driver incentive programs, among other efforts. The culmination of these efforts has resulted in MVT operating one of the most fuel-efficient fleets in the US. For more information please visit www.m-v-t.com.