Title: Shell Rotella® - Airflow
Duration: 3:57 minutes
Shell Lubricants and AirFlow Truck Company joined forces to develop a hyper-fuel efficient Class 8 tractor trailer, nicknamed The Starship. Bob Sliwa, Owner of the Airflow Truck Company, and creator of the Starship, talks about how he came up with the idea.
VO: The whole nature of building a concept vehicle is that no one's ever done it before. Why am I building this truck? It’s a challenge. We want better results than any so-called super truck ever did. I conceived and dreamt of this truck here in 1983.
SUPER: Starship Initiative Logo
BOB VO: Since I was a little kid I had a mechanical aptitude, where I could take something apart and put it back together and usually it would work better than the way it came from the factory. My name is Bob Sliway my company is airflow truck company.
BOB SLIWA: The mission of the starship initiative is to build the most aerodynamic and the most fuel-efficient Class-8 vehicle in the world.
Everybody needs a truck to deliver your food, your furniture, your cars.
SERGIO de ROOY: if you look at trucks in general fuel efficiency is around six to six and a half miles per gallon. It’s been like that for a very long time.
BOB SLIWA: I can see something, and something, something clicks. Wow! what if we did that with a truck?
Bob and Sergio chat over a computer
SERGIO de ROOY: this is a custom a truck. the gap was essentially built from scratch. A number of innovative technologies have been used and incorporated.
BOB SLIWAY: This is a highly electric truck. We have the world's first 48 volt Delvaux rimi
Alternator. We also have on top of the trailer, a 15 solar panel array puts out 5,000 watts.
The whole purpose of these skirts is they prevent any air from going underneath the trailer.
SERGIO de ROOY: If you look at the cab itself, it's entirely made of carbon fiber. Extremely lightweight, very hard.
We take a multi-faceted approach. People from diverse backgrounds coming together, having different views and pushing innovation.
BOB SLIWA: I can just email you these files and when you get back into
your office you can calculate exactly how much product.
Looking over truck
TOMMY PIKE: So what happens if you have a a six-foot long, six-foot wide dashboard, it's just going to be a terrible inflection. So we're doing with this, a semi-don't, we're doing here is diffusing that like.
COLLABORATOR: my recommendation is that you would line the interior with the ultra product, and then take the either the quarter inch foam or the half inch fall right over the top of it.
BOB SLIWA: there are a lot of setbacks on the road to success. Every day we have a problem making something fit. You know, figuring out how an angle on a bracket would work, or how a sub-assembly comes together, or hard to plumb a line.
We've pushed the envelope so much, we make a lot of mistakes, but we try to learn from every mistake, and we try to not make the same mistake twice
Basically, this whole project is an accumulation of my life’s war. It's just a good thing to do, for the, you know, for the trucking industry, for, you know, our children and grandchildren. It's just a good thing to do.
When I finally get it out on the road, I’m gonna be the happiest guy in the world.
END CARD: Shell Rotella logo and tag line.