TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. has launched its first Electronic Stability Control system (ESC) with an integrated inertial measurement unit (IMU) on the Lancia Delta, to perform previously discrete sensor data acquisition directly within the ESC electronics module.

Traditionally ESC systems have been introduced with a stand-alone IMU. TRW will now produce an ESC with integrated IMU as a viable way to reduce the number of modules in the vehicle while retaining the performance of the ESC. By integrating the IMU directly into the ESC, TRW is able to reduce the ESC system cost, weight and wiring harness complexity. The integrated design also provides a convenient scaleable solution for vehicle manufacturers wishing to offer both ABS and ESC braking systems within a model range.

In addition to the first launch of the ESC with integrated IMU, TRW has developed an Airbag Control Unit (ACU) with IMU integration. These IMU integration options are based on common sensor development and are both available to meet various vehicle architectures and platform requirements. With ESC mandates in place in North America and Europe, TRW's strategy also includes further sensor integration at the silicon level to offer additional cost, performance and reliability advantages.

Martin Thoone, vice president, engineering, Global Electronics said: "These technologies are a part of TRW's ongoing efforts to integrate sensors and controllers with the dual goal of increasing performance while lowering costs. Integrating the IMU is the first step toward combining a variety of chassis and occupant safety control functions that will offer weight and packaging advantages and enhanced data sampling rates - enabling a variety of active and passive systems to act together to improve vehicle safety."

"We are pleased to launch this advanced, integrated ESC system with the Fiat Group," said Josef Pickenhahn, vice president, braking engineering for TRW. "As an electronics safety systems specialist, TRW has the depth of knowledge to offer our customers a full array of integration options and is relentlessly pursuing higher levels of safety and performance."

2010 Interfuture Media/Italiaspeed