Trade press, 2017-01-20, 11:32 AM
thyssenkrupp building new test center for steering technology in Liechtenstein
- Around 15 million euros to be invested in new test and competence center in Eschen
- New virtual test processes will shorten development times
The industrial and technology group thyssenkrupp today signaled the start of construction on a new test and development center for steering technology in Liechtenstein with a symbolic groundbreaking ceremony for the project at its steering business’s HQ in Eschen. In the future, the roughly 3,000 square meter test center will bring together thyssenkrupp’s competencies in development, vehicle bodies and prototyping. Completion of the 15 million euro project is planned for the first half of 2019.
Dr. Karsten Kroos, CEO of thyssenkrupp’s Components Technology business area: “Combining and expanding our test and development activities will enable us to serve our automotive customers better and more quickly with new solutions and products. This applies in particular to the large number of new orders for electric power-assisted steering systems we have received in recent months. We will also be addressing new development trends in chassis and steering and translating them into customized, market-ready products.” For electric power-assisted steering systems alone thyssenkrupp has received auto industry orders worth around eight billion euros in this and last fiscal year.
Based on this steering technology, the new test center will drive current development projects such as steer-by-wire, e-mobility and the further development of driver assist systems as a precursor to automated driving. For example, in the area of basic research state-of-the-art measuring technology will be used to examine new materials and test their suitability for use in future products. Four- to six-week endurance tests will allow the quality and service life of these products to be mapped over the entire vehicle lifetime. Work in the acoustics center will focus on further optimizing the acoustic performance of the steering systems.
“The results of the various test series will feed automatically into our digital test models. New software-based analyses will allow us to identify the relevant development parameters and test them in a virtual environment. This will make prototyping significantly more efficient and save on cost-intensive development time,” said Kroos.
In addition to the new test center in Liechtenstein, thyssenkrupp already operates a software and development center for steering technology in Budapest. This center brings together all the company’s software development activities for electro-mechanical steering systems and among other things develops new software functions for improved driving safety.
thyssenkrupp’s global steering business employs around 8,000 people at 16 sites in eleven countries across four continents. Its roughly 2,200-strong workforce in Liechtenstein makes thyssenkrupp one of the country’s biggest employers. The company produces and develops steering components and systems for more than 20 million vehicles annually. thyssenkrupp is the world market leader in the production of steering components and steering columns using cold-forging technology. The company also develops new steering technologies such as steer-by-wire systems which require no direct mechanical link between the steering wheel and the car wheels and will permit entirely new steering and assist functions in the vehicles of the future.
thyssenkrupp in the automotive industry
thyssenkrupp is one of the world’s leading suppliers of materials and components to the auto industry. Nine out of ten premium class cars are fitted with components made by the company. One in three trucks feature drive components from thyssenkrupp. In the 2015/2016 fiscal year thyssenkrupp’s sales in the automotive sector came to around 9.8 billion euros. Customers include practically all the big auto manufacturers.