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Phillips Industries, Velvac team up for trailer-to-tractor communication platform

Phillips Industries and Velvac, Inc., are teaming up to offer a new patent-pending connected vehicle solution designed to support trailer-to-tractor video and data communications and connectivity.

Velvac’s Road iQ subsidiary worked with Phillips Industries to develop TrailerLink, which augments the traditional tractor-trailer 7-pin electrical connection with an additional ISO 15-pin cable connection. This 15-pin cable connection, when combined with Phillips’ trailer-mounted dual-nose box and additional tractor-mounted tail box, provides a secure, real-time video and data connection between the tractor and the trailer. It also provides connectivity that is immune to the noise, interference and latency concerns associated with other wireless or PLC data transmission approaches.

TrailerLink provides the high-speed data highway between tractors and trailers needed to support future generations of intelligent devices mounted on trailers, including multiple trailer mounted video cameras, CAN communications, etc.

“We saw that there was a growing need for simple, reliable, high-speed data connectivity between tractors and trailers that was not being met by various wireless or PLC solutions on the market,” says Velvac CEO Jeff Porter.” There is an explosion of video and CAN data being generated on commercial vehicles today, and the inability to cleanly move that data off the trailer to the tractor is a growing problem that TrailerLink is designed to address”.

Phillips Industries President Rob Phillips says pairing trailer cameras via Wi-Fi to drivers’ smart-devices isn’t easy or reliable, and light-duty coiled cables struggle to do the trick.

“TrailerLink is the first system designed specifically for sending high-speed and noise-free video data from the trailer to the driver, and is the result of excellent collaboration between Velvac and our engineers,” he says.

The initial release of TrailerLink will support the connection of up to four exterior or interior trailer-mounted cameras to displays and recording devices in the tractor. Future TrailerLink releases will additionally support a J1939 gateway between the tractor and the trailer. The TrailerLink open systems architecture is designed to support all industry standard data and video signals, so it will support the vast majority of mobile cameras, standard displays, and recording devices, on the market today. It can also be integrated into Road iQ’s advanced VideoData Server system for surround vision viewing, recording, and connected vehicle applications.

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