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Predictive Maintenance

Continental is checking air springs with ultrasound

The automobile industry supplier has developed a sensor for air springs, which should make city buses, in particular, safer and more efficient. Predictive maintenance is also envisaged.

29 Aug. 2018
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Continental is checking air springs with ultrasound (Photo: Continental AG)

The “Ultrasound Height and Pressure Sensor” (UHPS) measures the current height of the vehicle and the pressure in the air springs by ultrasound and transmits the readings to a control unit, which then opens and closes the valves automatically. In this way, the bus driver can specify a set value which is maintained automatically throughout the journey. Until now, drivers have had to alter the driving level of the bus repeatedly in day-to-day service because of speed bumps, uneven road surfaces and height differences at stops and, for example, have had to operate “kneeling” – lowering of the bus on one side at a stop – manually. With the new sensor, this process can be carried out entirely electrically and automatically.

Continental is planning to provide the Ultrasound Height and Pressure Sensor with a system for predictive maintenance so that, if there is a risk of a breakdown, a fault message is generated automatically, thereby reducing bus downtimes. This also makes sense in view of the significant heat to which the sensors are exposed by the larger exhaust systems in the low-emission Euro 6 engines.

The new sensor is being presented at IAA Commercial Vehicles in Hanover in September.