BERU Develops Innovative Powertrain Sensors

November 19, 2009

The company's customized temperature, movement and smart sensor solutions are designed to aid automotive manufacturers to reduce emissions and optimize engine performance.

AUBURN HILLS, MI /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- BERU, a BorgWarner business, is developing innovative sensor solutions for powertrains and exhaust systems, including temperature, motion and smart sensors with intelligent electronics. Designed to exacting tolerances, these ultra-precise sensors provide customized measurements to reduce emissions and optimize engine performance. BERU expects the global market for these types of advanced sensors to grow significantly over the next five years.

"Today's cars and commercial vehicles rely on up to 30 sensors performing a wide variety of functions in the powertrain and exhaust system alone," said Dr. Thomas Waldhier, BERU Chairman and CEO. "Sensors are taking an increasingly important role in optimizing engine performance and reducing emissions. With years of experience in sensor technology and expertise in metal processing and plastics engineering, BERU is positioned to offer innovative solutions for this growing technology market."

For the 1.3-liter diesel Fiat 500 and Grande Punto, BorgWarner's variable turbine geometry (VTG) turbocharger features a motion sensor from BERU. The sensor measures the position of the pneumatic actuators responsible for adjusting the turbine blades to optimize boost pressure. Because the sensors are calibrated to the turbocharger instead of the vehicle, automakers avoid expensive incremental calibration of the engine control unit.

BERU's high temperature sensors (HTS) are used with turbochargers, diesel particle filters and a number of catalytic emissions filter systems. HTS sensors detect the loading rate of particle filters, constantly providing data to the engine control unit (ECU) to calculate when to start the regeneration process. During this process, temperatures can increase to over 1700°F (926°C). When the HTS sensor detects these high temperatures, the ECU ends the regeneration process to reduce temperatures and protect turbocharger blades from damage. With a platinum sensor element, the HTS sensor achieves a measurement range of 104°F–1742°F (40°C–950°C). The closed sensor also offers short response time, plug-and-play capability, flexible dimensions and high resistance to exhaust gas.

In California, consumers receive tax incentives for buying vehicles with catalytic-coated radiators and using this ozone reduction technology for the lifetime of the vehicle. To help automakers meet the requirement to ensure that these devices continue to work throughout the vehicle's lifetime, BERU has developed smart sensors, called radiator identification sensors (RIS), to alert the driver if a non-catalytic coated radiator is installed in the vehicle. Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz are using the RIS sensor in series production.

About BERU
BERU is a worldwide leading supplier of diesel cold start technology and manufacturer of ignition technology for gasoline vehicles. Its electronics and sensor technology provide more comfort and safety for applications in various engine and vehicle functions with products such as direct-measuring tire pressure monitoring systems and sensors for applications in engines, powertrain and exhaust systems.

About BorgWarner
Auburn Hills, Michigan-based BorgWarner Inc. (NYSE:BWA) is a product leader in highly engineered components and systems for vehicle powertrain applications worldwide. The FORTUNE 500 company operates manufacturing and technical facilities in 60 locations in 18 countries. Customers include VW/Audi, Ford, Toyota, Renault/Nissan, General Motors, Hyundai/Kia, Daimler, Chrysler, Fiat, BMW, Honda, John Deere, PSA, and MAN.

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