Skip to content

Space Drive and the Schaeffler Mover pave the way to a sustainable and autonomous future

Schaeffler Drive is a key technology for autonomous driving

The mobility of tomorrow is facing immense challenges in urban areas: Traffic density and the number of people on the move are increasing all the time, and optimum use must be made of the limited circulation space that is available. Other objectives of sustainable mobility include eliminating the threat of gridlock and at the same time keeping air pollution levels to a minimum. At the IAA, Schaeffler will be presenting the third generation of its Space Drive technology and the enhancements that have been made to the Schaeffler Mover – solutions for autonomous and sustainable mobility in urban spaces.

Focusing on readiness for volume production

In the future, autonomous and partly autonomous vehicles will have no mechanical connection between the steering wheel and the steering gear. Schaeffler has been active in the field of autonomous driving for years, and the company already supplies products that are suitable for volume production and directly available. Owned by Schaeffler Paravan, Space Drive is a key enabling technology for tomorrow’s automated, autonomous, and connected vehicles that is currently being developed with a view to volume production. It is a leading drive-by-wire technology comprising a triple-redundant electronic interface that operates vehicle steering, accelerator, and braking functions and thus enables autonomous driving in a wide range of application scenarios. “In the future, all autonomous vehicles will need brake-by-wire and steer-by-wire technology”, explains Dr. Dirk Kesselgruber, Head of Schaeffler’s Chassis Systems business division. The focus was previously on so-called “people movers” and other autonomous vehicles that were equipped with Space Drive. Schaeffler Paravan also plans to bring the Space Drive technology onto the rapidly growing market for industrial, agricultural, and leisure applications. Thanks to its remote control function and the omission of space-consuming steering wheels, the system also offers greater comfort and safety for caravans, mowing vehicles, and vehicles used in high-risk areas such as mining, ski slope maintenance, salvage, and firefighting. By the year 2021, Schaeffler Paravan aims to have this system ready for volume production. What is more, Schaeffler also recently signed an investment agreement with China’s Hunan province. The aim of this collaboration is firstly to enhance the autonomous technologies available in China for application in the country’s giant metropolitan centers, and secondly to establish a new R&D center in the region.

Unique selling proposal: Worldwide approval for road use

Space Drive is a system of hardware and software in which all elements have been perfectly matched and that offers a revolutionary safety concept. In addition to drive and braking, Space Drive’s steer-by-wire function also allows the vehicle to be steered safely and reliably using only electronic control signals.

Space Drive is the world’s first – and so far only – drive-by-wire system to be licensed for on-road use and to feature the level of redundancy needed to guarantee functional safety and reliability. “The world’s only triple-redundant drive-by-wire technology with approval for road use is a key element in autonomous driving”, explains Matthias Zink, CEO Automotive OEM at Schaeffler. What is more, all of the system’s components comply with the stringent ECE standards. The computer unit (ECU) also fulfills the demanding ISO 26262 ASIL D functional safety standard. Schaeffler Paravan has equipped the third and most recent generation of Space Drive with even more high-performance electric motors and electronics, and has brought the interfaces fully up to date. In addition, the system’s costs are significantly lower and the electronic systems are secured against outside interference.

Please click here to view the full press release.

SOURCE: Schaeffler

Welcome back , to continue browsing the site, please click here