Having efficient, sustainable operations doesn’t require having a fleet full of electric vehicles. In fact, fleet owners can improve their fleet’s efficiency and lower emissions with the simple installation of software from Derive Systems.
In business for more than 25 years, Derive Systems is a Clean Air Act-compliant calibration company that creates software that adjusts the way fleet vehicles behave to ensure efficiency. The system is currently the only one on the market that can address emissions through fuel reduction, and it takes only about 30 minutes to install in the vehicle. But the best part—it gives fleets an average fuel savings of 6 to 8% and even up to 10%.
HOW IT WORKS
Derive Systems works complementary with telematics systems. Its current partners include Verizon Connect and Geotab. With Derive Systems installed on a fleet vehicle, Derive can coach drivers so that fleet managers can focus on the job at hand.
Derive Systems coaches drivers by capping speeds and reducing the rate that vehicles idle. The system can also limit aggressive driving by altering shifting pattern capabilities. Derive accomplishes this through its calibration, which simply rewrites the electronic control unit to adjust shifting patterns. This process essentially gives drivers an artificial eco button.
Derive Systems has proven its technology through testing and deployments. The company conducted one study with NC State, and even a third party, Element, a large fleet upfitter, validated an 8.65% fuel savings and an average mpg improvement with SafeLite AutoGlass using Derive Systems, as well.
Derive Systems also conducted a case study with Comcast. Derive installed its system in 25,000 Comcast fleet vehicles and the company saw a 9% fuel savings. That’s 2.7 million gallons of fuel saved. Now, Derive Systems is installed on every Comcast vehicle out there.
The system works in gasoline-powered vehicles as well as diesel-powered vehicles in Classes 1-6. The benefits of this system include fuel savings and lower emissions from fleet operation.
When looking at fleets from a sustainability and emissions perspective, it’s important to realize that instead of focusing solely on EV fleet conversion, we must also address the existing, non-EV fleets in the market. Derive Systems does exactly that: It addresses fuel reduction in internal combustion engine fleets through calibration to lower the emissions fleets pump into the air.
Craig Montgomery of Derive Systems says the Derive calibration process is an electronic tuning of the engine in which Derive Systems technicians determine the standards of a vehicle’s engine, back it up, and then remap it. “It’s a very effective, simple, safe process,” Montgomery says. Additionally, each of Derive System’s tunings is Clean Air Act compliant.
That remapping allows fleet managers to take control of their vehicle to permanently reduce fuel burn and reduce emissions. These simple installations, when viewed from a global scale, make a huge impact on the environment. Montgomery says that if just 15% of the entire fleet world used this Derive System software, also known as Derive VQ, it would immediately cut over 1.2 million metric tons of CO2. “That’s like taking 75,000 vehicles off the road immediately,” Montgomery says. “Even a fraction of the market adopting VQ efficiency technology makes a massive impact from a climate perspective.”
But not only does the remapping allow fleets to reduce their fuel burn, which reduces and emissions and saves dollars at the pump, it also allows them to reduce speeds, which have an impact on insurance rates and in turn, also impact the bottom line.
With Derive Systems, fleets can cut their fuel burn by 8%—and this savings happens immediately. But the benefits go further than that. The system can also adjust idle, enabling vehicles to have a 25% lower fuel flow. Montgomery says that means vehicles are burning 25% less fuel while idling.
According to Montgomery, Derive Systems is also working toward making its product a carbon offset, meaning fleets can take advantage of the system as a carbon credit or see additional benefits from a federal and/or state tax perspective. Fleets that install Derive Systems on their vehicles and cash in on tax benefits could use these savings to fund charging infrastructure installation down the road when and if certain fleets are required to have an all-electric fleet.
Further, the federal government is also doing a lot to amplify the adoption of technology such as Derive Systems. Montgomery mentions, for example, the STEER Act, that provides financial credits back to trucking fleets when they adopt sustainability technology like Derive Systems or others. Through acts like this one and other steps, the government is incentivizing drivers and corporations to leverage technology to begin reducing emissions today.
FOR IDLING & SPEEDING
Fleets that will benefit the most from a Derive Systems installation are those that idle or often find themselves in stop-and-go scenarios. Service fleets such as wireless, plumbing, pest control, and others that go from service call to service call and house to house, idling in their vehicle filling out paperwork, or keeping their engine on while serving a customer stand to benefit the most from Derive Systems.
Additionally, fleets that operate on the open road and highways where speeding issues abound can also greatly benefit from Derive Systems’ speed capping capabilities.
DOWN THE ROAD
Although Derive Systems is available with Class 1-6 trucks and vans, Montgomery says the system will be available for all classes by the end of next year. Derive Systems has already deployed its technology to owner/operators of Class 7 and 8 fleet trucks for testing, and the company expects a full commercial deployment to Class 7 and 8 trucks in the second half of 2022.
Additionally, Montgomery says the company is already working to configure its product so that it can work with electric vehicles and how to make them more efficient in the same way it currently works with internal combustion engines. But until then, Montgomery believes that anything that entices fleet owners to make a responsible, sustainable decision that lessens the impact on the environment today is important. After all, why wait until later to do what we can do now?
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Find out more about Derive Systems, visit www.derivesystems.com.