ABSTRACT

In the California Transportation Permits Manual, the minimum overall tire-to-tire axle width (overall width) of a vehicle in the extralegal weight configuration is 2.44 m. Commercial truck tractor and trailer tandem 1.82-m-wide axles fitted with new-generation wide base single (NGWBS) tires measure 2.34 m in overall axle width; thus, they are not compliant with the current California Department of Transportation requirement. Because of the growing application of NGWBS tires in the market, it is important to understand the vehicle stability characteristics of a tractor-semitrailer fitted with both dual and NGWBS tire configurations. In this research, a comparison of dual to NGWBS with both a 50.8-m outset wheel and a 25.4-mm outset wheel is presented. A rapid air loss (RAL) event was initiated to represent a severe scenario in each of the three following maneuvers: straight line, steady-state curve, and lane change. The data were evaluated, and differences between NGWBS and dual tire–fitted vehicles were compared. While a tire RAL event can be perceived as a dramatic event, previous studies and driver-training events have shown that such an RAL event is manageable. The conclusion of this work is that an RAL event with NGWBS tires is as manageable as a dual tire–fitted vehicle and does not make the system unstable.

You do not currently have access to this content.