TROY, Mich., April 28 - The automotive supplier LuK - a brand of the Schaeffler Group - received an honorable mention in the prestigious 2008 Automotive News PACE Award competition. The 14th annual PACE (Premier Automotive Suppliers' Contribution to Excellence) Award is jointly presented by Automotive News, Microsoft, SAP and Transportation Research Center Inc.
LuK was recognized for its Multi-Mode Power Split Damper. The innovation is a specialized torsional damper developed for hybrid vehicle applications. A torsion damper is needed in any vehicle utilizing a combustion engine in order to isolate the transmission from the firing pulses and other vibrations of the engine. Torsion dampers to date are normally of a dry type, used in conjunction with the clutch of a manual transmission vehicle, or a wet type, used in conjunction with a torque converter. Both damper types are adapted to their use in the launch device of the vehicle.
A power-split hybrid, by contrast, has no launch device. This is because the electric motor and engine work together to create an infinite number of gear ratios and this ratio range is used to manage the launch event. A torsion damper is, however, still required since a combustion engine is used.
LuK USA LLC, in Wooster, Ohio, utilized its experience with NVH simulation, torsion damper design, testing and manufacturing to construct a damper, which met the vibration isolation needs of the application in a very small installation space and in a very short development time. The development of the most recent application of this technology began in 2005 and production started in June 2007.
The LuK Hybrid Damper comprises:
- A torsion isolator using coil springs;
- A friction damping package;
- An interface to the engine and transmission input shaft; and
- An interface to drive the transmission pump and provide sealing.
"We are very proud that the judges identified the LuK Power Split Damper as a future-orientated technology for the latest hybrid applications, which contribute significantly to fuel economy in a vehicle," said Dr. Wolfgang Reik, executive vice president of R&D at LuK. "At LuK, we are willing to fully support our customers with tried-and-tested components, but also with cutting- edge technology in order to further decrease emissions and thus achieve the climate protection goals."
Recognizing superior innovation, technological advancement and business performance, the Automotive News PACE Award is open to suppliers that contribute products, processes, information technology, materials or services directly to the manufacture of cars or trucks. The award is accepted around the world as the industry symbol of innovation.
LuK earned an honorable mention in the product category, which recognizes innovations in new products that have significant market impact and act as "game changers" in the automotive industry.
The Schaeffler Group, with its brands INA, LuK and FAG, and approximately 66,000 employees at more than 180 locations in 50 countries, generates group sales of more than 8.9 billion euros (FY 2007) and ranks amongst the leading rolling bearing manufacturers and suppliers to the automotive industry worldwide. Affiliated companies include Schaeffler KG with its head office at Herzogenaurach and the brandnames INA and FAG, as well as the LuK Group, whose head office is located in Buhl/Baden and whose North American headquarters is located in Wooster, Ohio.
To serve the North American automotive market, the Schaeffler Group operates a 78,000-square-foot North American Automotive Tech Center in Troy, Mich. This facility employs 165 engineers and technicians and houses a 30,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art test lab outfitted with multiple test cells capable of performing test simulations for engine and engine components. Schaeffler Group Automotive has headquarters in Fort Mill, S.C. and manufacturing facilities in South Carolina, Missouri, Ohio and Ontario, Canada.
Richard Neilson of Schaeffler Group USA Inc.
firstname.lastname@example.org of Bianchi Public Relations for Schaeffler Group USA Inc.,