SmartWave can cut tire wear, boost fuel economy

DANA Corporation's Commercial Vehicle Systems group launched the SmartWave TPMS tire pressure monitoring system February 13 prior to the Technology and Maintenance Council's annual meeting. Resulting from last year's marketing agreement between Dana and SmarTire Systems Inc, the tire pressure monitoring system lays the foundation for a host of wireless sensing and vehicle communication system solutions.

“As trucking industry interest in fuel economy efficiencies through tire pressure systems continues to grow at an especially brisk pace, Dana and SmarTire have identified opportunities to give our customers a multitude of value-added solutions,” said Steve Slesinski, director of product planning for Dana's Commercial Vehicle Systems. “We will continue to address these opportunities with drivetrain offerings that reduce operating costs, improve safety, provide essential and valuable vehicle information, and offer customers a significant return on their investment.”

Slesinski noted that SmartWave TPMS system provides real-time tire pressure monitoring, enabling the system to work on the road, not just when passing through a stationary gate-reader or when someone is using a hand-held device. The SmartWave TPMS system communicates to off-board communication systems, sending important real-time pressure and temperature data to provide proactive maintenance scheduling as required. A record-keeping function provides convenient access to tire pressure events.

Slesinski added that the system's temperature monitoring feature tracks temperature fluctuations that directly impact proper operating tire pressures. The system automatically compensates for fluctuations, ensuring proper inflation regardless of tire temperature. This feature will take on greater importance as new 2007 exhaust treatment systems are expected to add significant heat discharge under the vehicle.

“Our system provides temperature-compensated pressure readings and on-board, real-time monitoring,” Slesinski said. “These and future SmartWave system features give us what we believe is a highly favorable position in the commercial vehicle marketplace.”

The SmartWave TPMS system alerts the driver via a warning lamp if a tire deviates from the manufacturer's recommended pressure settings. Each tire's condition can be graphically indicated on a dash display unit, allowing the driver to see the current pressure of each tire, as well as a warning when one is low.

Slesinski said that the SmartWave TPMS system will generate substantial customer savings in fuel efficiency and tire wear by preventing the potential for damage associated with over or under-inflated tires. Reduced tire wear also substantially improves a tire's potential for re-treading and additional life.

Dana's portfolio of tire pressure management solutions also includes:

  • The Spicer TIMS tire inflation and monitor system. It is available as a standalone system or integrated with a Bendix TABS-6 trailer ABS, making it an integrated full-function, smart tire inflation and monitor system for trailers.

  • The Spicer TPCS tire pressure control system provides full inflate and deflate capability to improve mobility on soft soil, severe grades, sand, and snow. A vehicle's tires can deliver significantly more traction to the surface of an unimproved road due to the larger footprint when deflated. TPCS is the only system of its kind that is available as a factory-installed option. Air seals are built into the axles to eliminate the need for external air lines for reliable, trouble-free performance. A new integrated Driver Display Module (DDM) and new dash-mounted rocker switches simplify operation and maximize vehicle mobility.

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