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Products and solutions, 2005-09-12, 10:06 AM

Suspension and damping innovations from ThyssenKrupp Bilstein

The design and tuning of suspension and damping systems always represent a compromise between ride comfort on the one hand and driving safety and agility on the other. With the DampMatic® and DampTronic® passive/semi-active damping systems, ThyssenKrupp Bilstein presents two innovations aimed at further resolving this conflict.

DampMatic® is a passive amplitude-selective damper which automatically reduces damping force when amplitudes are low and increases it when body movements are more pronounced. Compared with conventional dampers, this simple, robust and low-cost innovation (no additional sensors or electronic controls) enhances ride comfort while maintaining the same level of roll stability. DampMatic® is fitted as standard in the new Mercedes A and B Class models, providing recognized improvements to roll stabilization and ride comfort.

DampTronic® is a semi-active, electronically adjustable damping system. Damping force is adjusted via a proportional solenoid which continuously varies a bypass oil flow to the conventional valve system. The adjusting valve can be integrated in the damper (DampTronic I) or mounted on the outside of the damper (DampTronic II). With the help of additional sensors (acceleration sensors on the body) and CAN signals, the driving situation and vehicle condition are fed to a central control unit which then optimizes the damping force on each individual damper. The DampTronic® system allows vehicles from sedans to sports cars to be adapted to customer requirements. The wide spread of damping settings between hard and soft goes some way toward resolving the conflict between driving safety and ride comfort. In addition to its good price-to-performance ratio, the system provides more effective tuning by also using conventional disk valves for the soft damping characteristics of relevance for comfort.

ThyssenKrupp Bilstein is system supplier for DampTronic® (dampers, sensors, ECU and algorithm). The system, which was developed in collaboration with Porsche AG, is used under the name Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) in the 911 Carrera, Boxster and Cayman S models.

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