Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), Autonomous Driving (AD) and the need for space saving solutions within electric vehicles have been the catalyst for a transition in braking systems. This has taken us to a penetration rate of 15% for EHB today, with projections putting that rate at over 50% by 20281, while the brake-by-wire market is projected to grow by over 7bn Euros from 2022-20262 globally. The goals for achieving the electrification of vehicles are ambitious, and manufacturers must move quickly to prepare for a rapidly approaching future and to take advantage of the opportunities this presents.
(1) Source: Datwyler internal; Aroq Ltd, QUBE by just-auto (2018); PwC Autofacts (2018); Schlegel und Partner (2018) (2) Global Automotive Brake-by-wire Systems Market 2022-2026
Electric parking brake
Selecting a partner that is experienced, agile and that has advanced capabilities is key.
Datwyler’s own core competencies of focus are material expertise, solution design and operational excellence – and outlined below is how those competencies add tangible value to braking systems projects.
Braking systems require the safest, most reliable materials in order to deliver the best performance. The EHB, for example, presents challenges that must be addressed right from the material development stage. The cleanliness of the compound means there must be very low residual dirt, whilst the highest requirements must be met for elements such as precision molding and low tolerances.
At Datwyler we control the process in-house, from raw materials testing and research and elastomer compound formulation, to materials science and mixing via our own mixing facilities. We are especially proud of our brand-new, state-of-the-art mixing facility in Nový Bydžov, Czech Republic. We also control the production process set-up, and via our dedicated Technology and Innovation Labs can develop surface treatments, ensure chemical compliance and carry out failure analysis and quality control.
Solution design is a core element in producing system-critical components for braking systems. Here we have the capabilities in structural mechanical analysis to deliver best-in-class solutions. Using Finite Element Analysis (FEA) to develop solutions together with our customers, the development process can be accelerated, enabling them to deliver systems that provide the highest levels of functionality. Parameters are set for the specific application, from which a first design is produced, tested and optimized purely in the virtual space. This provides a functional design, ready for prototyping, that should pass the endurance test of our customers.
These designs are as close as possible to the serial design, from which process efficiency and product quality can be effectively managed via virtual molding to simulate all of our manufacturing processes. Testing and modeling follow, and the value and the reliability of our simulations are dependent on accurate material models. Datwyler’s testing and modeling capabilities are best-in-class because we can ensure the highest accuracy as our materials are developed 100% in-house.
Ensuring quality and consistency of manufacturing is vital. At Datwyler we have the global reach and expertise to take virtual processes into real-time production wherever our customers need our support. We are able to take a project from the identification of a challenge, through the ideation phase to material and design proposal, testing and modeling, component drawings and tool manufacture and finally, via flow simulation, into full scale production.
Our expertise has led to cost reductions of up to 30% in terms of parts we have designed and optimized based on customer’s original designs, which have all been produced through Datwyler’s Production System (DPS). This global approach fosters a lean culture dedicated to operational excellence and zero defects. In addition, given the requirements of EHB technology, at the company’s Schattdorf base in Switzerland there is also a clean room operation to fulfil the highest cleanliness requirements in the automotive industry.
Of course there is a transitional phase that will eventually see brake-by-wire technology entering the mainstream equation, and we have already begun this path (read our blog on BBW technology). What we must not forget, however, is that legacy technology is still very much in use today, as well as the current innovation of EHB. Datwyler is synonymous with braking systems, and has made a commitment to continue to serve our customers and to be ‘the last man standing’ across all brake technologies as some players move away from areas such as the vacuum booster.
Daniel Triolo, Lead Key Account Manager at Datwyler, looks at brake-by-wire technology, its composition, and the many benefits it can deliver to the mobility sector and its customers.