Fleet Forward 2020 program


The Canadian transportation industry is tasked with moving people and goods through some of the most extreme and varied conditions in the world while remaining cost effective, safe, efficient and environmentally conscious. The Fleet Forward 2020 (FF2020) program leverages world-class engineering and scientific expertise along with unique facilities to develop and commercialize innovative technologies that will improve the operational efficiency of Canadian ground vehicle fleets.

The FF2020 program aims to improve the operational efficiency of targeted Canadian truck transportation, emergency services, urban transit, military and mining ground vehicle fleets. It will further deliver societal benefits tied to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions generated annually by the road transportation sector.


Collaborate with us

Collaborate with us on strategic research projects to help de-risk your innovative ideas, reduce your start-up costs and accelerate your commercial development timelines.

Collaboration opportunities

If you own a trucking or mining fleet, we can solve your immediate operational problems by providing you with a wide range of technical services. We can help you develop technologies that will contribute directly to greater profit margins, improve safety and efficiency of your operations and minimize your environmental footprint.


If you manage equipment in the defence sector, we can provide you with technical services aimed at resolving your critical issues as well as help you create technologies that will improve the operational efficiency of your land vehicle fleets, increase your equipment availability and enable more effective deployments of military personnel and assets.

If you are involved in the Canadian transit industry, the technical services we provide can assist you in resolving your current operational problems. Working with you, we can develop and deploy technologies that will improve your fuel efficiency, reduce your maintenance costs and cut down the number of unexpected in-service failures.

With over 40 years of experience, we are happy to offer you customized technical services or collaborate with you on mutually-defined projects in the following four areas:

  1. 1. Operational Effectiveness: We help solve your operational and technical problems by delivering services ranging from engineering design to modeling, simulation, prototyping, testing, evaluation and product integration. We can enhance the safety and security of your fleet through research, engineering, development and testing to improve the performance of your vehicles and equipment. This includes their dynamics, mobility, durability, functionality, maintainability, and operability in harsh climate as well as the performance of on-board mechanical, electrical and electronic systems.
  1. 2. Vehicle Diagnostics and Prognostics: We can help reduce repair and maintenance costs, improve logistics support and reduce in-service failures of your vehicle fleets. We can increase your equipment availability with vehicle health management solutions similar to those used in the airline industry. Using data generated from your fleet, you will be able to move from time-based maintenance to asset condition-based maintenance.
  1. 3. Power Management: We develop intelligent power management systems for various severe applications where power is needed in the right place and at the right time. Focusing on three energy saving opportunities – fuel conservation, alternative fuels and intelligent fuel use – we will develop the right solution to meet your power management needs.

NRC's 9 m wind tunnel provides aerodynamics testing for full-scale tractor-trailer configurations.

  1. 4. Enhanced Aerodynamics Performance: We can help improve the aerodynamic performance and operability of your vehicles through the evaluation and development of drag reduction technologies using advanced aerodynamic testing methods. With capabilities in road testing, computational fluid dynamics (CFD), wind tunnel testing (six wind tunnels including a full-scale rolling-road facility and a wind tunnel large enough to accommodate a full-size transport truck), and world class experts, we will work with you to create aerodynamic solutions tailored to your specific needs.
Collaborator benefits

We can serve as an integrated R&D extension to your team and solve your immediate problems related to fleet operation or the adoption and use of technology. We can help you get the most out of the latest innovations and minimize the risks associated with new technology implementation. Partnering with NRC can help you:

  • Improve your fuel efficiency
  • Improve your operational capability
  • Increase the availability and readiness of your fleet vehicles
  • Reduce your repair and maintenance costs
  • Enhance the safety and security of your fleet
  • Improve logistics support and reduce in-service failures
  • Reduce engine idle times and optimize power availability and distribution in your vehicles
  • Improve the aerodynamic performance
  • Reduce your environmental impact

We can help you improve your fleet efficiency. Call us to find out how.

NRC: Over 40 years of experience in surface transportation

Description follows.
Long description of timeline - NRC: Over 40 years of experience in surface transportation

Capitalizing on NRC's over 40 years of experience in surface transportation, FF2020 is well positioned to help fleet managers and owners optimize their fleets' performance. This image depicts some of NRC's historic highlights and achievements in the area of surface transportation, from the 1960s until the present time. In 1965, the 0.9 metre wind tunnel was completed. In 1970, the 9 metre wind tunnel was commissioned. In 1973, NRC was involved in the first-generation drag reduction work for heavy duty vehicles. In 1983, the climatic testing facility was opened. In 1986, the heavy vehicle tilt facility was opened. In the period from 2002 until 2006, NRC worked on designing stronger rear impact guards for trailers, in collaboration with CTEA and Transport Canada. From 2005 until 2012, NRC designed, tested and integrated equipment in military vehicles, helping protect Canadian troops in Afghanistan. From 2009 until 2012, NRC provided technical advisory support to the Canadian Space Agency during the development of Lunar and Mars rovers. In 2012, NRC, together with the Ottawa Police Service, developed idle reduction technology for police vehicles.

Technical and advisory services

We offer you a vast array of highly specialized services such as:

  • Vehicle aerodynamics (wind tunnels, CFD, road testing);
  • Full scale vehicle testing;
  • Vehicle and component analysis under severe climatic conditions;
  • Heavy vehicle engineering and testing;
  • Vehicle characterization;
  • Vehicle accident and incident resolution; and
  • Fleet optimization.
Research facilities

We put at your disposal state-of-the-art research and testing facilities, located in Ottawa, ON:

Contact us

Are you looking to improve fuel efficiency, reduce repair and maintenance costs, enhance the aerodynamic performance or minimize the environmental footprint of your fleet? We can help! To access our state-of-the-art research facilities or to connect with our surface transportation experts, please contact:

William Mayda, Program Leader (Acting)
Telephone: 613-990-7534
Email: William.Mayda@nrc-cnrc.gc.ca

Targeted industries

Fleet owners and operators, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and systems integrators in the trucking and mining, defence, and public vehicle sectors of the surface transportation industry.