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NREL - National Renewable Energy Laboratory
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Vehicle Testing and Analysis

Photo of two large semi-trailer truck cabs parked side by side on a hillside with a shrub-covered hill and sky in the background.

Researchers at NREL obtain useful data on energy efficiency during tests conducted both in the laboratory and outdoors in truck cabs like these.
Credit: Ken Proc

Researchers and engineers test new technologies and vehicles to find out if they will help manufacturers produce more energy-efficient cars, vans, trucks, and buses. They also carry out studies using computer simulations. These studies help to identify the vehicles and components that will provide the best fuel economy and performance at the lowest cost.

Fleet Tests and Evaluations

NREL's engineers use the latest equipment and techniques to conduct vehicle tests. These tests help to identify the most energy-efficient types of engines, fuels, and components. The tests also help to identify the technologies that will improve the environment by reducing the tailpipe emissions that cause pollution.

NREL's tests provide important data and information to those who design energy-efficient new vehicles as well as to those who build them. NREL evaluates entire fleets of trucks and buses as well as individual vehicles.

Learn more about fleet testing and evaluation.

Vehicle Systems Analysis

NREL's researchers analyze vehicle systems (such as advanced battery packs) to find out if they can be used in the energy-efficient cars and trucks of the future. The goal is to help increase fuel efficiency, reduce tailpipe emissions, boost vehicle performance, and determine the proper size and cost of vehicle components.

Using computer simulations, researchers can evaluate vehicle systems even before they're installed and used in an actual vehicle. NREL's researchers also evaluate how different types of vehicle systems work together and how they affect each other. This can also include how well these vehicle systems work with various alternative fuels and driving behaviors.

Learn more about vehicle systems analysis.