Sensor clusters will be integrated into airbag control units in more than 50 percent of automobile platforms by 2016 in order to support ESC functionality. This tendency toward higher integration is on the rise. In order to keep up, Continental’s Chassis & Safety division has adapted its organization. Among the results is the merging of the activities in the field of inertial sensors and sensor clusters with the airbag control unit activities into a new business unit, Passive Safety & Sensorics (PSS).
Due to the strong trend toward integrating ESC functionality into airbag control units, the Inertial Sensors segment has been consolidated with the Occupant Safety segment in Regensburg, Germany, which will also serve as the headquarters of this segment. The merger concentrates the know-how and strengths of both segments in order to promote continued growth. The aim here is to encourage innovation and to develop technologies of the future together. The combined segments consolidate some very diverse activities. »Sensor technologies will have a positive influence on passive safety in the future. We are going to be more effective as we offer automobile manufacturers technically sophisticated concepts featuring greater efficiency and reliability,« said Dr. Klumpp.
The new Business Unit Passive Safety & Sensorics reinforces the Chassis & Safety division’s systems approach and is supposed to provide integrated solutions for more safety in order to meet individual customers’ requirements on a global scale. The Advanced Sensors & Satellites segment, for example, offers sensors used in steering, chassis and brake systems, plus sensors that monitor batteries. It also offers acceleration and pressure satellites that provide all-around protection in case of an accident. Satellites are an essential part of any passive safety system and act closely with the airbag control unit. The Speed Sensors segment’s product portfolio includes wheel speed sensors for ABS and ESC as well as engine and transmission sensors for determining position, speed and turning direction.
Dr. Bernhard Klumpp has taken over responsibility for the new Business Unit Passive Safety & Sensorics and leads all activities regarding chassis and safety sensors as well as occupant safety worldwide. Dr. Klumpp has worked for Continental since 2001 and has served in various positions: Head of Industrial Engineering for Electronic Braking Systems, General Manager Continental Automotive Mexicana for the Speed Sensors Plant Silao, Mexico, Head of the ESC-Assembly Plant in Frankfurt, Germany and Senior Vice President Business Center Sensorics. The graduated mechanical engineer was most recently responsible for the Business Unit Sensorics.