TMC20: Wabco creates intelligent and connected trailer platform

WABCO intelligent trailer

WABCO Holdings Inc. is leveraging existing technology and components from other suppliers to create a connected and intelligent trailer platform.

The Auburn Hills, Michigan-based global supplier of commercial vehicle braking control systems is using open software architecture to get other suppliers involved with the intelligent trailer platform.

The foundation is four WABCO technologies, including an Intelligent antilock braking system (ABS), trailer ABS, an intelligent trailer program and its TrailerCAST telematics device.

The goal is to get tractors and trailers to proactively talk to each other to manage critical safety and diagnostic issues. Vehicle diagnostics provider Noregon and trailer axle manufacturer Hendrickson are integrating their products and services into the connected trailer platform.

“Looking to the future, WABCO’s position in truck and trailer braking will facilitate true connectivity between truck and trailer, helping to pave the way to higher levels of safety and efficiency,” said Collin Shaw, WABCO North America director of Business Development and Marketing, 

Intelligent ABS

WABCO has sold close to 6 million Trailer ABS systems in North America. The iABS system helps make the most of trailer control during emergency braking and enables intelligent trailer program features like lift axle control, door ajar and axle load monitoring.

Great Dane’s Fleet Pulse, introduced in October 2019 at the North American Commercial Vehicle show in Atlanta, uses iABS and other WABCO components.

“They use a lot of the intelligent trailer products that we have,” Shaw said. “They used odometer readings, ABS faults as well as the intelligent trailer product we use. We worked with them to help build their system.”

Importing telematics

The TrailerCAST telematics device, which WABCO debuted in Europe, helps get critical trailer information to customers through GPS and 4G cellular connectivity to iABS and its features, including a GPS location for trailers across North America.

“With our connected trailer platform, we’ll be able to provide real-time insights into information that previously was hard to get to, like ABS faults, decoding those faults, odometer readings and things like that,” Shaw said. “Those are the things that fleets in Europe have said they appreciated.” 

TrailerCAST can transmit critical trailer information to WABCO’s data cloud and fleets can access this information in real-time through Noregon’s TripVision.

“You have to buy an ABS unit,” Shaw said. “We’re simply just adding on a couple of pieces to that rather than multiple gateways or other devices that get all the data together and send it out. I think what this does is allow [trailer customers] to very simply add on telematics.”

German supplier ZF Friedrichshafen is expected to close soon on a $7 billion deal to acquire WABCO.