ABB and INA join in new variable valve train systems

06 Nov 2009

An ABB turbocharger

ABB Turbo Systems of Switzerland and INA Schaeffler of Germany have recently signed an agreement that will see the two companies co-operate in the field of variable valve trains for diesel and gas engines in the power range above 400kW.

The agreement reflects the wish by ABB Turbo Systems and INA to jointly develop a variable valve train (VVT) system which can be easily installed on engines and integrated into engine control units. ABB sees such a variable valve train system as being essential for modern engines with the high-pressure or two-stage turbocharging systems it currently has under development.

"VVT is a perfect fit for our two-stage turbocharging systems," explains Oliver Riemenschneider, head of sales and marketing at ABB Turbo Systems. The advantages of the new VVT system in combination with high-pressure turbocharging lie in the areas of emissions reduction and/or fuel efficiency as well as improved starting, part-load and transient behaviour.

The VVT system will be based on INA?s UniAir system for automotive applications and allows variation of the valve timing as well as of the valve lift.

Commenting on the co-operation, Dr. Peter Pleus, chairman of the executive board at the automotive arm of the Schaeffler Group, says that: "it will open up new areas of application for INA?s innovative variable valve system."

ABB Turbo Systems and INA both claim market leadership in their respective fields of business. INA's areas of expertise are in VVT technology for cars and its production knowhow, while ABB Turbo Systems has access to the large engine markets through early involvement in new engine development plus a strong global sales and service organisation.

The new VVT system will target four-stroke engines used in the marine and stationary power plant sectors. The agreement foresees production of the VVT system by INA and marketing, consulting and application engineering being carried out by ABB.

A prototype of the new VVT system is scheduled to be ready for testing on an engine in the first quarter of 2010.

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