Products and solutions, 2001-09-11, 02:00 AM
ThyssenKrupp Automotive Mechatronics books first production orders
In the eleven months since it was founded in October 2000, ThyssenKrupp Automotive Mechatronics GmbH - part of ThyssenKrupp Automotive`s Systems/Suspensions business unit - has already received significant production orders from German automobile manufacturers. These include orders for an electronically controlled anti-roll stabilizer and an active damping system, which the company will produce in collaboration with Krupp Bilstein GmbH.
With ThyssenKrupp Automotive Mechatronics, ThyssenKrupp Automotive AG has significantly expanded its electronics capabilities and opened the door to a lucrative market segment. Majority-owned by Krupp Automotive Systems GmbH, which is responsible for TKA`s systems business, the new company develops and manufactures mechatronic assemblies in particular for suspension and steering applications.
The term mechatronics stands for products which integrate mechanical, electronic and IT components into a single functional unit. For example, mechatronics is the key to the fly-by-wire technology used in modern aircraft, while automotive applications include ABS and ESP systems. Its potential in automobile manufacture is immense, with experts predicting annual growth rates of 10 to 15 percent.
Current mechatronics developments are focused on brake-by-wire and steer-by-wire solutions, i.e. replacing the mechanics or hydraulics used in conventional car braking and steering systems by electronics. The long-term objective is Integrated Vehicle Control - a network of mechatronic systems to monitor and control all aspects of driving and vehicle status.
One reason why ThyssenKrupp Automotive Mechatronics GmbH has been able to establish itself so quickly and successfully on this future market is that it was already addressing mechatronics when the technology was still relatively unknown. The company originated from the resources of Thyssen Transrapid Systems GmbH, which developed the Transrapid high-speed maglev train to application readiness. Work on the Transrapid, where not just brakes and steering but virtually all functions are electronically controlled `by-wire`, provided a fund of 20 years` experience in mechatronics applications. The company possesses particular strengths in the development of stable power supply systems for vehicle electronic components and technologies for high-speed data and signal transmission.
The interdisciplinary nature of mechatronics is reflected in the composition of the team at ThyssenKrupp Automotive Mechatronics GmbH. The 60-strong workforce is made up of electrical, electronics, control and mechanical engineers and mathematicians. The company has its own production shop for electronics components and extensive testing facilities, e.g. for mechanics, electronics, drive dynamics and electromagnetic compatibility.
A further factor in the success of ThyssenKrupp Automotive Mechatronics is its integration in ThyssenKrupp Automotive AG. The company is one of the few mechatronics suppliers providing systems solutions, thanks to close cooperation with Krupp Automotive Systems and with other TKS subsidiaries such as steering system manufacturer Krupp Presta and shock absorber producer Krupp Bilstein. This constellation ensures an holistic approach to mechatronics developments at ThyssenKrupp Automotive. Mechanical, electronic and IT components are ideally matched and integrated from the outset. This results in products which make driving safer and more comfortable.
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