With the exhibit eSolutions, Schaeffler is giving detailed insights into its wide-ranging product portfolio
- Mobility of the future will be driven by electric mobility and optimized internal combustion engines in equal measure
- Schaeffler lays solid foundation for electric mobility with its eMobility Systems Division and creates new jobs
- Schaeffler envisages potential for optimization in internal combustion engines of up to 30 percent
- Schaeffler makes decisive contributions to reducing fuel consumption and harmful substance emissions
- Schaeffler gains more than proportional benefit from the enduring trend in energy efficiency on its path of continuing growth
The North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), taking place from January 9 - 22, 2012 in Detroit, will see Schaeffler Automotive unveiling a number of forward-looking innovations. The trade show is being held right on the doorstep of the "Detroit Three" - the USA's three largest automobile manufacturers - and traditionally marks the start of the new year for the automobile industry.
The exhibits that Schaeffler will be presenting in Detroit include both innovations for optimizing conventional drive trains based on the internal combustion engine and a variety of hybrid solutions and electric mobility products. The Schaeffler eSolutions concept model is a showcase for a number of interesting innovations, such as the eWheel Drive electric wheel hub drive (winner of the eCarTec Award) and the pioneering eDifferential - an electric axle that allows both the specific distribution of the drive torque to individual wheels and torque vectoring, and thus provides unique driving dynamics in electric and hybrid vehicles. "Electric mobility will make a significant contribution to driving our business", says Prof. Peter Gutzmer, Chief Technology Officer at Schaeffler, in reference to the significantly increasing number of vehicles - both fully electrically driven and utilizing hybrid technology - that are now incorporating electric drive components.
In order to dedicate the appropriate attention to this field, Schaeffler has now combined its activities in an eMobility Systems Division. The division has initially employed 300 people who are working solely in electric mobility on an international scale. In addition to the product range for electric and hybrid vehicles, the issue of electric mobility for Schaeffler also includes considerations for the infrastructure associated with it, which is why the company has been one of the key suppliers to the wind power sector and other areas in renewable energy from the very beginning.
Innovations from Schaeffler that make a significant contribution to increasing the efficiency of vehicles with conventional drive trains are also generating a high level of interest. "After all, the majority of all automobiles in the future will still have internal combustion engines, serving either as the single or primary drive source, or as a range extender", explains Prof. Peter Gutzmer. "These internal combustion engine drive trains still have a great deal of room for improvement in terms of fuel consumption and CO2 emissions - up to 30% in practice."
When considering these improvements in detail, this potential can be achieved by optimizing the thermodynamics, minimizing pump losses and frictional resistance, using ancillary equipment controlled according to requirements, targeted thermal management, downspeeding, downsizing, and the start-stop function. "The micro hybrid, that is the start-stop function, will feature in automobiles across the board in a very short time", says Prof. Pleus, Member of the Executive Board Engine Systems at Schaeffler. "Start-stop systems place special requirements on different components, and Schaeffler offers a wide range of customized solutions to fulfill each of these."
Innovations in torque converter technology, the thermal management module, and components for variable valve trains will also be among the exhibits taking center stage in Detroit. "With its efficient future mobility motto, Schaeffler continues to consistently pursue the path it has always traditionally taken", says Dr. Juergen M. Geissinger, CEO of Schaeffler. "Energy efficiency is deeply embedded in Schaeffler's genes. And Schaeffler's numerous successful products and promising innovations, as well as its extensive development network and global manufacturing expertise, mean the company is in an excellent position. Activities such as setting up the eMobility Systems Division enable us to further develop our capacities in research and development, as well as in manufacturing, and allow us to orient ourselves towards the demands placed on us by the automobiles of today and tomorrow. This makes Schaeffler a global supplier of expertise for efficient future mobility", Dr. Geissinger sums up.