HERZOGENAURACH, Germany, April 11, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Automotive and industrial supplier Schaeffler has been presented with the "2016 German Innovation Award" in the large companies category for its innovation and development of an active electromechanical roll control system. The awards ceremony was held on April 8 in Munich.
"Schaeffler has a tradition of being the most innovative company in Germany," said Prof. Peter Pleus, CEO automotive, Schaeffler AG. "This is also documented by the latest figures with more than 2,300 patent applications in 2015. The electromechanical active roll control system convinced the high-profile German Innovation Awards committee of our innovative capacity. The product adds to Schaeffler's range of electromechanical actuators that provide significant contributions to power and efficiency in automobiles."
The electromechanical active roll control system
Schaeffler's volume production of the electromechanical active roll control system has opened up a new chapter in chassis technology. This technology adjusts the chassis to any driving situation quickly and absorbs irregularities in the road, thus minimizing the vehicle's rolling motions. This increases comfort, safety and dynamics. The innovation helps reduce fuel consumption and emissions compared to hydraulic systems and simplifies assembly in automotive manufacturers' production plants. The first large-scale application for the electromechanical active roll control system was in a luxury class sedan, as well as in the powerful and dynamic luxury SUV class. The latter even included a 48-volt electric system.
Schaeffler's electromechanical active roll control system consists of a gearbox and a control motor with an electronic system as well as an integrated torque sensor. The control motor with its high-ratio, three-stage planetary gearbox twists the two halves of the roll control in opposite directions to produce a torque that has a stabilizing effect on the vehicle body. The torque is measured precisely by means of a non-contact torque sensor and used to regulate the actuator quickly and precisely. To increase comfort, the Schaeffler solution also includes an innovative decoupling element made of high-strength elastomer. Fast data transmission and a state-of-the-art software architecture also allow the system to be used in networked driving applications.
Unlike hydraulic systems, electromechanical active roll control only uses electric power on an as-needed basis ("power on demand"). One of the key factors here is the electric motor, which only consumes power when the swivel actuator twists and builds up torque. Only a relatively low electrical loss of resistance has to be compensated to maintain the moment. Schaeffler has installed two state-of-the-art production lines at its Schweinfurt location for the volume production launch of the new system, making a conscious decision to stay in step with innovations in Germany. The facilities have a modular design in accordance with Industrie 4.0 criteria. This will allow subsequent product launches and future, refined generations of this technology to be integrated without any problems.
The German Innovation Award
Accenture, EnBW, Evonik and WirtschaftsWoche magazine established the "German Innovation Award" initiative in 2010 to recognize outstanding, trend-setting innovations by German companies whose innovative capacity changes business and markets. The group is in under the auspices of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. The German Innovation Award is organized by the Handelsblatt publishing group.
The Schaeffler Group is one of the world's leading integrated automotive and industrial suppliers. The company stands for the highest quality, outstanding technology, and strong innovative ability. The Schaeffler Group makes a decisive contribution to "mobility for tomorrow" with high-precision components and systems in engine, transmission, and chassis applications as well as rolling and plain bearing solutions for a large number of industrial applications. The technology company generated sales of approximately 13.2 billion euros in 2015. With around 84,000 employees worldwide, Schaeffler is one of Europe's largest technology companies in family ownership. It has a worldwide network of manufacturing locations, research and development facilities and sales companies at approximately 170 locations in 50 countries.
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