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TRW Announces Tech Advances

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mattroush Matt Roush
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LIVONIA — TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. (NYSE: TRW) demonstrated advanced video camera and braking technology at an event Monday in Ingham County’s Locke Township.

TRW demonstrated S-Cam camera sensor as well as outlining plans to invest in a third generation camera in anticipation of increasing regulatory focus for forward collision warning and lane keeping systems in North America.

TRW also demonstrated its new Integrated Brake Control system, a vacuum independent technology which can simplify the brake system while enhancing performance.

Peter Lake, executive vice president of sales & business development said of the camera systems: “In North America, in the coming five years, we expect to see a strong trend to implement camera systems — particularly in light of the high frequency of accidents caused by lane drift.”

He said the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration pegged 53 percent of 2010 road fatalities result from a roadway departure, and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety data estimates that lane departure warning and lane keeping assist systems could save more than 7,500 lives in the United States each year.

TRW’s next generation camera will build on the current feature set of its production S-Cam (headlight control, lane detection, traffic sign recognition and vehicle detection & classification for automatic emergency braking), with focus on improved pedestrian detection functionality as this becomes a key safety target throughout Europe and the United States.

The development is a continuation of the successful partnership between TRW and Mobileye in place for TRW’s current production S-Cam forward-looking camera, available today in the European and Asian markets and within the next year in the US market.

Josef Pickenhahn, vice president of braking engineering said of the braking system: “Since we introduced this technology over a year ago, we’ve received significant interest from customers and now have development contracts running with major European vehicle manufacturers. The system offers excellent braking performance that will make a considerable difference, for example, when combined with future driver assist systems, such as radar and camera, to enable features such as automatic emergency braking. With these functions becoming more important — in particular with tougher Euro NCAP requirements for five-star ratings and increased requirements for ‘Top Safety Picks’ in the U.S. — we believe that our IBC will be the braking solution of choice for the future.”

The IBC replaces — in a single integrated unit — the electronic stability control system along with the vacuum booster and the associated cables, sensors, switches, electronic controllers, and vacuum pumps where they are required for low-or no-vacuum configurations.

At the heart of the system is an actuator that is driven by an extremely fast-acting brushless electric motor. This is monitored by a rotary encoder that provides the control ECU with data on revolutions turned, rotational speed and position. Also integrated into the system is a separate hydraulic circuit designed to communicate the driver’s braking intent to the system via an electronic signal while retaining the traditional feel of a hydraulically operated brake.

“The brushless electric motor gives the system its remarkable braking performance and ESC capability,” Pickenhahn said. “This provides an exceptionally fast pressure rise rate which translates into a one g vehicle deceleration in less than 150 milliseconds.”

IBC also offers considerable packaging and weight savings compared with current ESC systems — weighing just under 4 kilograms (8.8 pounds) in contrast with 7 kiolograms (15.4 pounds) for a conventional component set.  It is planned that TRW’s IBC will be ready for production for 2016 model year applications.

With 2011 sales of $16.2 billion, TRW Automotive ranks among the world’s leading automotive suppliers. TRW Automotive products include integrated vehicle control and driver assist systems, braking systems, steering systems, suspension systems, occupant safety systems (seat belts and airbags), electronics, engine components, fastening systems and aftermarket replacement parts and services.

More at www.trw.com.

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