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Michelin says that research by the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory has found that wide single tyres are significantly more fuel efficient than duals on heavy trucks.

More than 700,000 real-world miles were driven by six instrumented tractors and 10 trailers over the course of the four-year test.

“If fleets and owner-operators needed more proof that wide singles can save fuel costs, look no further,” said David Stafford, chief operating officer of Michelin Americas Research Company.

“Replacing duals with wide single tyres not only reduces rolling resistance and saves energy, but also reduces the amount of CO2 we put into the atmosphere.”

Primary data collected during the tests includes instantaneous fuel consumption, speed, acceleration, gear, location, time of day and grade. A total of 60 channels of data at 5Hz for one year were collected and analyzed. Half of the tractors were outfitted with Michelin X One wide single tyre, and half with standard dual tyre. Half of the trailers were outfitted with Michelin X One wide single tyre, two with standard dual tyre, and three with dual retread tyre. Oak Ridge researchers found significant fuel efficiency improvement over dual tyre when wide singles were in use – 6 percent overall and 10 percent with fully-loaded tractor-trailers.

“Our tests have found wide single tyre technology to be more fuel efficient in a variety of real-world conditions,” said Bill Knee, director of vehicle safety research at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. “As we continue the national and global discussion of conserving energy, fossil fuels and other natural resources, this technology is a solution that is making a difference today.”