Factors Affecting the Friction Coefficients between Wooden Pallets and the Wooden Floor of a Van-Type Semi Trailer

Strauss, M., Carnahan, J., and Inendino, L.
SAE Paper 2001-01-2755, Chicago, IL, 2001. SAE 2001 Transactions – Journal of Commercial Vehicles
View on SAE.org


This paper investigates the coefficients of static and kinetic friction between the hardwood flooring of a used semi-trailer and the bottom surfaces of both an old and a new hardwood pallet, with varying cargo weights, at varying locations in the trailer. A total of 22 tests were performed with the pallets moving parallel to the longitudinal axis of the trailer and perpendicular to this axis.

The results show that the variations in load did not statistically affect the friction coefficients. The older pallet had statistically smaller static and kinetic friction coefficients (s=0.32, k=0.26) than that of the newer pallet (s=0.35, k=0.29). The static friction coefficients were statistically dependent upon whether the test took place at the front (0.36), middle (0.34) or rear (0.32) of the semi-trailer. Kinetic coefficients behaved similarly: front (0.29), middle (0.27) or rear (0.26).