June 5, 2018 - 12:00 PM EDT
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Shell and AirFlow Truck Company Announce Results From Cross-Country Run with Starship Initiative Truck


JACKSONVILLE, Fla., June 5, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- After traveling more than 2,300 miles across the southern United States and with a tropical storm looming in the Gulf of Mexico, Shell Lubricants and AirFlow Truck Company completed the cross-country test drive of the Starship Initiative truck on May 24, 2018. This journey marks the first time that a prototype Class 8 vehicle of this type, with these combined technologies, has driven coast-to-coast across America in real-world trucking operations and in real-world conditions including unplanned stops and torrential rains along the way.

Shell Oil Company Logo. (PRNewsFoto/Shell Oil Company)

The real learning was that despite the far-from-perfect road and weather conditions, the completion of the drive itself was a success. For the cross-country drive, the Starship truck attained 178.4 ton-miles per gallon1 for freight ton efficiency2 – a nearly 248 percent improvement over the North America average freight ton efficiency of 72 ton-miles per gallon for trucks3. Freight ton efficiency is a more relevant statistic for judging the energy intensity associated with moving cargo from point A to point B since it combines the weight of cargo being moved with the amount of fuel consumed.

"Our goal with the Starship Initiative is to challenge how the trucking industry is defined and to further the conversation by working with AirFlow Truck Company and others," said Robert Mainwaring, Technology Manager for Innovation, Shell Lubricants. "Through this road trip, we were able to test the Starship truck along with a number of technologies available today to provide insight into what trucking fleets and owner/operators could consider adopting to help reduce fuel use and emissions as they haul heavy loads. This includes optimized aerodynamics, drivetrain and operational efficiencies, and low viscosity lubricants."

The final total truck and cargo weight was close to 73,000 pounds, which is 28 percent heavier than the average total gross vehicle weight of 57,0004 pounds for a U.S. on-highway Class 8 truck. The payload weighed in at 39,900 pounds, 77 percent more mass than the U.S. average payload of 22,5005 pounds, and was comprised of clean reef material destined for a new offshore reef installation in Florida. For the entire journey, which included vastly different road, weather and terrain conditions, the Starship truck's total average fuel economy was 8.94 miles per gallon, compared to the average U.S. fuel economy for transport trucks at 6.46 miles per gallons.  The best fuel economy attained during the drive was 10.2 miles per gallon.

And, in terms of calculating estimated CO2, if all trucks in the U.S., 2 million of them7, reached the overall fuel economy and freight ton efficiency performance of Starship, they would emit an estimated 229 million less tons of CO2 into the atmosphere per year. A reduction of 229 million tons would correspond to a huge, 60 percent, reduction in CO2 emissions from the U.S. truck fleet, highlighting the benefit of the enhanced economy and increased loading strategy adopted within the Starship Initiative.

"The Shell team didn't take the easy road to trying to achieve the best results they could with their first drive with the truck," commented Mike Roeth, Executive Director, North American Council for Freight Efficiency. "They knew they wanted to make the truck run, but they went a step further. They carried a much heavier load than many average truckers on the road carry, traveled a longer route in an uncontrolled environment with a variety of technologies not tested in these real-world conditions. For us, it was a rewarding opportunity to see the truck move from an idea on paper to traveling with the team on the road to help verify the run results." 

For the Shell Starship team, the cross-country journey brought several learnings and firsts. The cross-country journey provided Shell with an opportunity to test Shell ROTELLA® T6 Ultra 5W-30 Full Synthetic engine oil in a cutting-edge vehicle prior to its introduction to market. The combination of (1) Shell lubricants technology, (2) carefully thought through aerodynamics, including customized carbon fiber cab and full side skirts along the length of the trailer, (3) Cummins X-15 Efficiency engine, (4) low rolling resistance tires, and (5) a smart driving strategy all contributed to the strong freight ton efficiency result.

The streamlined design of the truck was amped up with the addition of recent Department of Transportation-approved full video only mirrors that provided a broader, nearly 180-degree view on each side of the truck for the driver. In addition to living like truckers for a week on the road, including fueling up and comparing notes with other truckers at stops, the team learned first-hand how to safely pack and load heavy freight for long-haul transport.

"These and other learnings are not the final results; they are simply the start of our ongoing learning," added Mainwaring. "We'll move forward to apply learnings from this test run and implement additional technologies on the truck for future testing. While it would be easy to say the Starship Initiative has been very successful, we know there is more we can do to continue to drive industry dialogue and share learnings moving forward."

With new fuel economy and emission regulations on the horizon and the need for continuing advances in fuel economy, the Starship Initiative has taken a step in the journey to target the world's global energy challenge. To stay up-to-date on the latest Starship Initiative activities, visit www.shell.com/starship.

About Shell Lubricants
The term 'Shell Lubricants' collectively refers to the companies of Royal Dutch Shell plc that are engaged in the lubricants business. Shell Lubricants companies lead the lubricants industry, supplying more than 11 percent of global lubricants volume.* The companies manufacture and blend products for use in consumer, heavy industrial and commercial transport applications. The Shell Lubricants portfolio of top-quality brands includes Pennzoil®, Quaker State®, FormulaShell®, Shell TELLUS®, Shell RIMULA®, Shell ROTELLA® T, Shell SPIRAX®, Shell Gadus® and Jiffy Lube®. http://www.shell.com

*Kline & Company, "Global Lubricants Industry November 2017: Market Analysis and Assessment.

AirFlow Truck Company
AirFlow Truck Company has built two previous aerodynamic and fuel-efficient Class 8 tractor trailers, the first in 1983 and the most recent in 2012. 


Images and b-roll of the Shell Starship Initiative and the cross-country journey can be accessed here.

Cautionary Note:
The companies in which Royal Dutch Shell plc directly and indirectly owns investments are separate legal entities. In this press release "Shell", "Shell group" and "Royal Dutch Shell" are sometimes used for convenience where references are made to Royal Dutch Shell plc and its subsidiaries in general. Likewise, the words "we", "us" and "our" are also used to refer to Royal Dutch Shell plc and subsidiaries in general or to those who work for them. These terms are also used where no useful purpose is served by identifying the particular entity or entities. ''Subsidiaries'', "Shell subsidiaries" and "Shell companies" as used in this press release refer to entities over which Royal Dutch Shell plc either directly or indirectly has control. Entities and unincorporated arrangements over which Shell has joint control are generally referred to as "joint ventures" and "joint operations", respectively.  Entities over which Shell has significant influence but neither control nor joint control are referred to as "associates". The term "Shell interest" is used for convenience to indicate the direct and/or indirect ownership interest held by Shell in an entity or unincorporated joint arrangement, after exclusion of all third-party interest.

This press release contains forward-looking statements (within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995) concerning the financial condition, results of operations and businesses of Royal Dutch Shell. All statements other than statements of historical fact are, or may be deemed to be, forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are statements of future expectations that are based on management's current expectations and assumptions and involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, performance or events to differ materially from those expressed or implied in these statements. Forward-looking statements include, among other things, statements concerning the potential exposure of Royal Dutch Shell to market risks and statements expressing management's expectations, beliefs, estimates, forecasts, projections and assumptions. These forward-looking statements are identified by their use of terms and phrases such as "aim", "ambition', ''anticipate'', ''believe'', ''could'', ''estimate'', ''expect'', ''goals'', ''intend'', ''may'', ''objectives'', ''outlook'', ''plan'', ''probably'', ''project'', ''risks'', "schedule", ''seek'', ''should'', ''target'', ''will'' and similar terms and phrases. There are a number of factors that could affect the future operations of Royal Dutch Shell and could cause those results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements included in this press release, including (without limitation): (a) price fluctuations in crude oil and natural gas; (b) changes in demand for Shell's products; (c) currency fluctuations; (d) drilling and production results; (e) reserves estimates; (f) loss of market share and industry competition; (g) environmental and physical risks; (h) risks associated with the identification of suitable potential acquisition properties and targets, and successful negotiation and completion of such transactions; (i) the risk of doing business in developing countries and countries subject to international sanctions; (j) legislative, fiscal and regulatory developments including regulatory measures addressing climate change; (k) economic and financial market conditions in various countries and regions; (l) political risks, including the risks of expropriation and renegotiation of the terms of contracts with governmental entities, delays or advancements in the approval of projects and delays in the reimbursement for shared costs; and (m) changes in trading conditions. No assurance is provided that future dividend payments will match or exceed previous dividend payments.  All forward-looking statements contained in this press release are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements contained or referred to in this section. Readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Additional risk factors that may affect future results are contained in Royal Dutch Shell's 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2017 (available at www.shell.com/investor and www.sec.gov ). These risk factors also expressly qualify all forward looking statements contained in this press release and should be considered by the reader.  Each forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date of this press release, June 5, 2018. Neither Royal Dutch Shell plc nor any of its subsidiaries undertake any obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or other information. In light of these risks, results could differ materially from those stated, implied or inferred from the forward-looking statements contained in this press release.

We may have used certain terms, such as resources, in this press release that United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) strictly prohibits us from including in our filings with the SEC.  U.S. Investors are urged to consider closely the disclosure in our Form 20-F, File No 1-32575, available on the SEC website www.sec.gov.

1 North America Council for Freight Efficiency data verification report for Starship truck coast-to-coast test drive
2 Freight Ton Efficiency is calculated by miles travelled divided by gallons of fuel consumed times the payload weight in tons.
3 NACFE Run on Less Report page 34, https://nacfe.org/run-on-less-report/
5 North American Council for Freight Efficiency data and reports
6 North American Council for Freight Efficiency Run on Less Report page 34, https://nacfe.org/run-on-less-report/
7 https://www.truckinfo.net/trucking/stats.htm
8 Reductions in CO2 emissions per year calculated if all trucks in the US operated at the same FTE [ton-miles/gallon] as Starship, with the scale of the fleet reduced to balance the increased loading. CO2 emissions refer to those emitted from the combustion of diesel fuel alone with a standard emission rate of 22.4lbs of CO2 per US gallon of diesel fuel.


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SOURCE Shell Lubricants

Source: PR Newswire (June 5, 2018 - 12:00 PM EDT)

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