Utilization of Vehicle Connectivity for Improved Energy Consumption of a Speed Harmonized Cohort of Vehicles

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Pavlis Honors College; Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics


Improving vehicle response through advanced knowledge of traffic behavior can lead to large improvements in energy consumption for the single isolated vehicle. This energy savings across multiple vehicles can even be larger if they travel together as a cohort in harmonization. Additionally, if the vehicles have enough information about their immediate path of travel, and other vehicles' in that path (and their respective critical forward-looking information), they can safely drive close enough to each other to share aerodynamic load. These energy savings can be upwards of multiple percentage points, and are dependent on several criteria. This analysis looks at criteria that contributes to energy savings for a cohort of vehicles in synchronous motion, as well as describes a study that allows for better understanding of the potential benefits of different types of cohorted vehicles in different platoon arrangements. The basis of this study is a precursor to developing a connected vehicle application that safely allows for fully controlled platooning on open highway for multi-destination vehicles. In this study, a set of light duty plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) passenger vehicles examined in speed controlled platoons of varying composition and organization, and its effective net energy improvement is examined. Evaluated are varying gaps between vehicles, the effect of vehicle speed and energy consumption in a cohort, the effect of different aerodynamic features on a vehicle, whether a PHEV vehicle is utilizing the engine or electric propulsion, and where that vehicle is located in the platoon, the offset of a vehicle from preceding vehicle's centerline, and whether the HVAC system is functioning. In addition, a set of control test(s) and independent vehicle energy consumption test were observed.

Publisher's Statement

© 2020 SAE International. All Rights Reserved. Publisher’s version of record: https://doi.org/10.4271/2020-01-0587

Publication Title

SAE Technical Papers