Bendix launches new safety, productivity products at MATS

May 1, 2009
Fleet Safety and productivity were the focus of new product introductions from Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems LLC. New products unveiled March 19 to
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Fleet Safety and productivity were the focus of new product introductions from Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems LLC. New products unveiled March 19 to 21 during the 2009 Mid-America Trucking Show (MATS) in Louisville, Kentucky, include active cruise control with braking and a booster system to improve fuel economy.

Bendix Wingman ACB is available for fleets to order today, with vehicle delivery in early July. Several truck manufacturers announced during MATS that they are incorporating wingman ACB into their new models.

Bendix Wingman ACB (active cruise with braking) is an innovative technology that delivers warnings and proactive interventions to help drivers avoid collisions and collects data to help with fleet operations and driver training. Using a radar sensor mounted to the front of the vehicle — and building on Bendix ESP full stability technology — the system assists drivers in maintaining a set following distance between their trucks and vehicles in front of them.

With cruise control on and speed set, Bendix ACB will warn and provide active interventions — reducing throttle, engaging the engine retarder, and, if necessary, automatically applying the foundation brakes to help the driver maintain the intended following distance. When cruise control is not engaged, drivers still get the benefit of following distance alerts to let them know if they are getting too close to the forward vehicle.

Bendix Wingman was designed to deliver driver-friendly adaptive cruise control technology with full vehicle and braking system integration. Information, warnings, and operation of the system are incorporated into the vehicle dash. Drivers activate the system using the existing cruise control switches in the vehicle.

Bendix believes full-stability is a critical foundation for all active safety technologies. That's why Bendix Wingman ACB is built on full-stability.

Automatic brake applications on wet, snowy, or ice-covered surfaces can result in directional instability — slide-out or over-steer events that can lead to a jackknife or loss-of-control situation. By including full-stability, with its capabilities for reading driver steering intent and vehicle direction, the potential instability instigated by the automatic application of the brakes can be mitigated.

Delivering an ROI and quick payback on any system is important anytime, but takes on even greater significance in the current economic climate. Besides potentially reducing accident related costs, early tests indicate that Wingman ACB may have an additional benefit for fleets: improved fuel economy. Enabling drivers to stay in cruise for longer periods of time usually results in better fuel economy for the fleet. Plus, the active interventions of the system may help reduce collision related costs. Potential accident reduction and improved fuel economy can, in turn, mean a quick payback and significant ROI for many fleets.

Pneumatic booster

Bendix also introduced its Pneumatic Booster System (PBS), an air management system designed to improve fuel economy and vehicle acceleration, while reducing engine emissions. Two models are available, reaching 80% of engine applications. The PBS 200 model is available for 4- to 8-liter engines, while the PBS 400 is available for 8- to 13-liter engines.

Currently undergoing internal validation, as well as field and engine benchmarking testing, PBS simultaneously improves engine efficiency, reduce turbo lag, and reduce Nitrous Oxide (NOx) emissions and particulate matter. The system is placed near the engine air intake manifold and monitors the Controller Area Network (CAN) for specific signals. Once the conditions for activation are met, the PBS injects compressed air from an auxiliary air tank into the engine manifold, delivering the desired amount of air that the diesel combustion processes require.

“Bendix has long been known as a pioneer in commercial vehicle air treatment,” said Steve Mance, vice-president and general manager of the charging business for Bendix CVS. “We are using our core air management capabilities and expertise to go beyond the air brake system.”

Typically, when a driver presses down on the throttle to demand acceleration, there is a delay in engine response because of turbo lag. This lag constitutes the time difference between acceleration demand and the maximum air delivery of the turbocharger. The Bendix PBS system overcomes turbo lag by instantaneously injecting the desired air into the intake manifold, allowing the turbocharger to spin up to its full capacity and taking over the air delivery demands.

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