TRW Furthers Development Of Next Generation Brake Systems For Electric, Hybrid And Low Vacuum Powertrains

Frankfurt, Germany: TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. is developing its next generation of advanced, modular brake systems – the technology is vacuum independent and can simplify the brake system while enhancing functionality. The systems can allow for full brake blending for all regenerative braking system architectures.

Josef Pickenhahn, vice president, braking engineering for TRW, explains: "TRW is building on its considerable experience in delivering both safety and regenerative braking for alternative powertrains such as electric and hybrid electric vehicles. We were among the first to deliver a full electronic stability control system to seamlessly support regenerative braking when we introduced our Slip Control Boost system in 2007 for General Motors two-mode hybrid SUVs, and have since extended that solution to the award winning Chevrolet Volt and Opel Ampera electric vehicles.

"We are now taking the knowledge gained from our first production regenerative braking technology and working on the next evolution of electronic braking systems. Using a very fast motor similar to that employed within TRW's electrically powered steering systems, we are developing a technology that can cover the challenging braking requirements even when vacuum is not available. This fully integrated system – Future Brake System (FBS) - will use pedal simulation and a mechatronic brake boost, but will be up to 4 kilograms lighter and will eliminate some components to make it more affordable.

"Our development and testing program to date has been very well received by the customers who have experienced the results. This is a great solution for replacing the power of the vacuum created by the traditional internal combustion engine."

Designed as a fully modular system using many standard components from the EBC460 Slip Control family, that also formed the basis for SCB, the technology meets all standard brake and control functions such as ABS and Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and can support enhanced autonomous brake applications with highly dynamic brake pressure builds and control accuracy for systems like Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and ACC Stop and Go, Collision Mitigation and Automatic Emergency Braking.

"As the hybrid, electric and direct-injection engine vehicle markets continue to grow, and all vehicle architectures will need to support higher degrees of safety, TRW stands ready to assist our customers with flexible systems that meet the requirements across the broad range of engine variants for vehicle platforms," says Peter Lake, executive vice president, sales and business development, TRW Automotive.

"Fuel efficiency, packaging flexibility and weight reduction are key factors, while offering regenerative energy recovery with full ESC functionality capable of supporting advanced safety functions. TRW's FBS is an exciting solution for tomorrow's vehicles."