CHEREAU next (New Experience Trailer) is the first new generation refrigerated semi-trailer to use multiplexing technology. The semi-trailer’s systems communicate with each other for the purpose of automating numerous functions and developing new ones, while increasing comfort, efficiency and safety for hauliers.
The process involves grouping the vehicle’s key components into a single network using sensors, enabling all the data relating to their use to be gathered at a single point, from which these components are able to interact. Although, at a glance, the vehicle does not appear to have changed much, its multiplexed architecture has revolutionised everything. (Information revealed in July 2017).
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS
CUSTOMER BENEFIT NUMBER 1:
COMMUNICATION WITH THE TRACTOR UNIT: A semi-trailer that communicates with its tractor unit.
For the first time ever, the tractor unit and semi-trailer form a homogeneous unit. Previously, communication between the two was limited to information related to braking and lighting. Thanks to multiplexing, tractor units can now receive key data from the semi-trailer on the tractor unit dashboard: for example, temperature, group alarms, fuel level, open door warnings, etc.
For the very first time, drivers will be able to monitor semi-trailer operations from their cabs and, if necessary, be warned of any possible malfunctions. During the initial stages, CHEREAU worked with Scania, Volvo and Renault Trucks to integrate and display a set of warning indicators into the dashboard. A choice that was quite simply dictated by CHEREAU’s customers, the majority of which use these three makes. Obviously, work to incorporate this same information into other manufacturers’ dashboards is continuing.
The wealth of information provided does not depend on the technology but on the willingness of those partners on board the vehicle to make such information available. For example, in more concrete terms, the CHEREAU next semi-trailer is able to convey all the information relating to the refrigeration unit, provided its manufacturer grants access to its system. CHEREAU is working constructively with all its partners (unit, tailgate, EBS system manufacturers) to enable end users and all stakeholders to benefit from a maximum amount of operational data.
A complete list of the information transferred to the dashboard was unveiled at the commercial launch during the Solutrans 2017 trade show.
Information revealed in July 2017:
CUSTOMER BENEFIT NUMBER 2:
ERGONOMCS: more automated features for improved comfort and productivity.
By instrumenting certain elements such as the rear doors and connecting them to the CAN system, it is possible to automate their operation and offer improved ergonomics. For example, when the tailgate is raised, the SmartOpen-C is opened, the interior LED lighting illuminates the inside of the vehicle, the refrigeration unit cuts out and the AirShutter-C air curtain is activated.
Multiplexing also enables all vehicle functions to be controlled from inside the vehicle body, which is a major benefit for all dock operations.
This is the next control unit (pictured right) installed inside the rear of the body, it has multiple features and enables numerous key vehicle functions to be controlled. The upper section in blue contains refrigeration-related functions: refrigeration unit on/off, choice of compartment to be monitored, set-point adjustment, defrost activation. The two arrow buttons are used to increase and decrease the temperature.
Below this, on the grey background, are the following 3 buttons: one for the SmartOpen-C and one each for raising and lowering the suspension and the tailgate.
N.B. for the tailgate, CHEREAU recommends a model with automatic tailgate platform operation.
Below this, on the black background, are the buttons for switching on and off the lights and the AirShutter-C air curtain. Two additional buttons are included for other optional equipment.
At the bottom, there is a maintenance check button, which is used to display any possible fault codes, a unit low-fuel warning light and another for battery voltage. Finally, this control unit provides an original safety feature: semi-trailer disabling mode for docking, which increases the safety of loading and unloading operations.
CUSTOMER BENEFIT NUMBER 3:
SAFETY: unrivalled safety features to protect users.
Coupling certain functions together enables the level of safety for drivers and road users to be significantly increased. For example, when closing, the SmartOpen-C rear door will cause the interior lighting to flash, to alert anyone who may be inside the vehicle.
It is also possible to warn the driver and to prevent the vehicle from starting when the tailgate is deployed or the compartment door is open. This is only a brief overview of the many original features that will be available on CHEREAU’s multiplexed semi-trailer.
In addition to the semi-trailer disabling button for docking, CHEREAU next offers numerous features that make the driver’s various everyday operations safer:
Automatic disabling in “boost charge” mode when the unit is connected to a power supply, the semi-trailer’s brakes are automatically locked, preventing the vehicle from leaving while still attached to the electrical system.
When the ignition is switched off, if the driver leaves the sidelights on, the CityLight boom will light up for two minutes to allow the driver to deploy his tailgate. If the tailgate is not deployed, the CityLight automatically switches off.
FIVE NEW LIGHTING FUNCTIONS IMPROVE SAFETY FOR ROAD
Automatic activation of the CityLight flash boom for deliveries, when the ignition is switched off.
Emergency braking warning, when the ABS is triggered, the hazard lights automatically come on.
Road holding warning: the hazard lights automatically come on when level 2 of the semi-trailer’s anti-roll system is activated.
Parking sidelights, if the ignition is switched off and the indicators are in the right or left position, the clearance lights remain alight on the specified side.
Flashing clearance lights on changing direction.
CUSTOMER BENEFIT NUMBER 4:
CONNECTIVITY: a “plug and connect” system.
Grouping together all the data from equipment connected to the network at a single point provides a vast array of information, which can be transmitted via any telematics system using the plug-and-connect principle, i.e. without needing to add sensors or use a cabling network on the vehicle. A time saving solution with undeniable reliability.
CUSTOMER BENEFIT NUMBER 5:
VEHICLE MAINTENANCE: easy diagnostics and preventive maintenance.
CHEREAU’s multiplexed semi-trailer has a diagnostics interface, which enables potential fault codes to be identified, thereby facilitating maintenance as it is carried out on motor vehicles. The number of cycles for equipment such as the SmartOpen-C is also indicated, in order to guarantee effective preventive maintenance.