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The Mechanics of Heavy Duty Trucks and Truck Combinations - A four Day Professional Development Course: 7-10 July, 2014

Event Venue:
Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, Trumpington Street, Cambridge CB2 1PZ
Dates of Event:
7th – 10th July, 2014
Last Booking Date for this Event:
4th July, 2014

The Cambridge Vehicle Dynamics Consortium (CVDC) is pleased to present a four day event focussed on the dynamics of heavy goods vehicles.  The event will include the definitive short course on heavy truck dynamics from the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI) as well as hardware and software demonstrations and hands-on exercises.

The heavy goods vehicle is a complex mechanical system, requiring its own modelling techniques, analysis programs, parameter measurement methods and test procedures.  These will all be discussed during the event. Attendees will also have the opportunity to tour the Cambridge laboratories and see a demonstration of the CVDC computer-controlled experimental vehicles.

The first day of the event will include the unique opportunity to attend the start of the Cambridge to London stage of the 2014 Tour de France cycle raceSee UKsport Web site

The UMTRI course will include:

  • An overview of vehicle dynamics theory

  • Tyres, suspensions, brakes and steering systems

  • Unit truck, articulated vehicle and driver modelling

  • Ride, rollover, handling and braking

  • Hand-on exercises in vehicle simulation

  • Instrumentation and field-testing of heavy vehicles

The event will also include:

  • Social programme including an evening barbecue beside the River Cam and the event dinner in the impressive Old Hall of Queens' College.

Watch a video about the course here.

The Instructors

Chris Winkler is a Research Scientist Emeritus at the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute. Chris has been involved in research into the dynamic behaviour of heavy-duty trucks throughout his more than 40 year career at in the Engineering Research Division at UMTRI. Chris has been the chairman of the Vehicle Dynamics Standards Committee of SAE and a US delegate to the Vehicle Dynamics and Road Holding committee of ISO.

Thomas D. Gillespie, Ph.D., is a research scientist and professor who has earned an international leadership position in the fields of vehicle dynamics engineering and transportation policy and safety, and who co-founded Mechanical Simulation Corporation in 1996. He authored the textbook "Fundamentals of Vehicle Dynamics," which is considered required reading for all vehicle dynamics engineers. He is frequently called upon to teach vehicle dynamics to engineers at many of the world's automotive manufacturing companies. His expertise has also thrust him into many unique, critical roles around the world.

Steve Karamihas, a senior research associate in UMTRI's Engineering Systems Group, has dealt primarily with the interaction of vehicles and roads and road surface roughness measurement.  He also operates the heavy vehicle suspension-parameter-measurement facility at UMTRI, where he has tested over 160 heavy vehicle suspensions. In addition, he has analysed data from on-road heavy-vehicle ride tests and laboratory heavy-vehicle tilt-table tests. He is the current chair of the Vehicle Dynamics Standards Committee and the Vehicle Performance Steering Committee of SAE. He earned bachelor's and master's degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Michigan.

Further information is available at the UMTRI website.

Who should attend?

In addition to engineers involved in vehicle dynamics, this event is intended for persons engaged in technical activities such as heavy vehicle design,  equipment selection, fleet safety operations, accident reconstruction, development of truck safety standards and highway/truck interactions.

Course Fees

The course registration fee is £1500. The registration fee includes all course materials, daytime meals, course dinner and barbeque.

An Early Bird discount of £100 is applicable to all registrations made before 1st June, 2014.

Discounts are also available for students in full-time education.  Contact Virginia Longhi for details (

Payment should be made in full at the time of registration.


Course Registration

To register for the course click here.

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