The 3rd Voltage

Lucidity Australia, the first to have lighting, wiring and DC systems suitable for Australia’s heavy vehicle industry 3 voltage standards.

Correct operation of electrical equipment fitted to trailers is paramount to keeping all road users safe.  Under new Duty of care legislation released last year it’s become more apparent trucking companies compliance obligations are a priority.  Lighting not operating correctly, beacons not rotating, solenoids burning out are all factors the industry have experienced when using a fleet of trucks fitted with Voltage reducers.

There is very limited awareness or admission that in the transport industry we in fact operate our equipment on an industry accepted or tolerated 3 voltages.   Most are aware of 2 voltages which are nominal DC 12 and 24 Volts.  So why am I talking about 3 voltages? Many operators and even experts in the industry do not truly understand the 3rd voltage, I’m sure most know it exists but what is it?

As mentioned we have 12 Volts, 24 Volts and for some vehicles operating at 24 Volts they have a voltage reducer to offer power to the trailer.  This is known as Reduced or chopped 24 Volts.  Most of the industry I would suggest, also believes the reduced voltage to be 12 volts DC.  That would make sense as that’s generally what’s expected but in fact the reduced 24 Volts operates nowhere near 12 Volts DC, and nor is it the type of voltage expected being linear 12V DC.  Once reduced, the signal operates at an RMS voltage, is no longer DC, and it becomes AC operating at 50Hz and an RMS voltage of approx. 9.6V.  Voltage reducers were fitted to allow operators easy connection of trailers fitted with 12V Globes…  Globes are not affected by the signal provided by the reducer.

The underlying fact is that the Australian transport industry operates using not 2, but 3 voltage standards and has done for a very long time.

What does this all mean?  It means that there is certainly going to be some compatibility problems when connecting various trailers to trucks.

What components are affected?

  • Reverse locking solenoids
  • Rotating Beacons
  • Led Lighting
  • Auxiliary equipment such as Auto Grease and Tyre Inflation & Charging Products
  • Backup alarms

So clearly, nearly every electrical item fitted to a trailer for compliance, warning and or correct operation of the vehicle connected to the trailer lighting circuits.

Lucidity like many suppliers has manufactured for years, a series of products suitable for the 12 and 24 volt markets.  Now we can proudly say Lucidity are the only supplier in the market that can truly supply complete trailer systems based on the industries 3 voltages.  Lucidity Australia has perfected a select range of products that will operate seamlessly no matter which truck is towing your trailer.  Systems designed by Lucidity Australia are the only products on the market you can be assured will operate on all 3 voltages.  To ensure compliance and correct operation you must insist on Lucidity designed systems when specifying any trailer builds.

Mathew Jenkins, President of Lucidity Australia.

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