Concept car to production in six months fits 007’s timeline


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Daniel Craig won’t have to share marquee billing with the Aston Martin DB10, but the usual gadgets and an extended chase scene give the car a major role in Spectre, the latest James Bond movie. Aston Martin’s engineering team were integral in the movie’s timeline, going from rough sketches to fully functioning vehicles in only six months.

Aston Martin and Bond have been linked since the DB5 stole some scenes from Sean Connery in Goldfinger in 1964. When the team from Eon needed a car for their 24th Bond movie, they headed to Aston Martin’s headquarters in Gaydon, Warwickshire, UK.

“The team from Eon came over, Sam Mendes (director) and Barbara Broccoli (producer) asked what we had,” said Marek Reichman, Chief Creative Officer at Aston Martin. “We showed them the cars in our pipeline that weren’t on the road. Mendes saw a sketch of a future model and said he loved it, that it fit his thinking of the kind of car James Bond would drive.”

Eon asked Aston Martin for 10 DB10s, figuring that some of them wouldn’t survive filming, especially a lengthy chase scene with another concept vehicle,

BorgWarner tech center adds testing muscle, engineering resources


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Additional in-house testing capabilities and the hiring of 180 engineers and technicians at BorgWarner’s newly expanded Auburn Hills, MI, Powertrain Technical Center (PTC) underscores an ambitious strategy to reach $15B in annual sales by 2020.

“North America is a big part of that growth, and the expansion of the PTC will support many of the programs that are being launched in the U.S.,” said Christopher Thomas, BorgWarner’s Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. The company’s 2014 sales were $8.3B.

Thomas spoke with Automotive Engineering prior to the recent grand opening. The 46,000 ft(4274 m2) expansion adds two testing labs that he said will help streamline the development process for engine and driveline products, plus conference rooms, work stations, and a 4000 ft2 (372 m2) fitness center. PTC’s new Torque Transfer Lab is equipped with a heavy-duty dynamometer capable of testing all-wheel drive products, such as transfer cases and couplings.

This new asset brings durability and efficiency testing as well as clutch characterization capabilities in-house. Previously some work in this area, including aspects of BorgWarner’s validation programs, was done by outside vendors, according to Michael Palazzolo, a validation development engineer.

During a tour of the lab, Palazzolo noted the 1000-hp (746-kW), two-speed dynamometer powered by three AC motors. “We can shift

New Challenger GT AWD Concept


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A two-door muscle car prepped for year-round road conditions is the driving influence behind the Dodge Challenger GT AWD Concept.

“The thought for this concept: It’s the four-season muscle car. Raise your hand if you’d like to do an all-wheel-drive burnout,” Head of Mopar Design Joe Dehner said in an Automotive Engineering interview prior to the car’s debut at the 2015 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show in Las Vegas.

The Challenger GT AWD is one of several vehicles representing the Chrysler, Dodge, JeepRam, and Fiat brands at Mopar’s 15,345-ft² (1425-m²) exhibit. According to Todd Beddick, Mopar’s Head of Accessories and Performance Portfolio, “As far as we know, this is the only 8-speed automatic AWD V8-powered Challenger.”

The production Challenger R/T’s 5.7-L Hemi V8 thumps out 372 hp (278 kW) at 5200 rpm and 400 lb·ft (542 N·m) at 4400 rpm, but the Challenger GT AWD’s use of a Mopar Scat Pack 3 Performance Kit elevates the power output by up to 75 hp (56 kW) and up to 44 lb·ft (60 N·m).

“In order to handle all that go and the AWD traction,

Know the Matters and Get the Best Benefits from Automotive Batteries

Automobiles need batteries to get electric energy,and for this purpose, automotive batteries were invented. These batteries are rechargeable and small in size, so that they can be set up in automobiles very easily. Especially, an SLI battery is regarded as an automotive battery. SLI means, Starting, Lightning and Ignition. The work of an SLI battery is to supply energy to the starter motor, the lights and the ignition system of an automobile.
Six galvanic cells are used to make these batteries and they are usually lead acid type. At full charge, an automotive battery provides 12.6 volts. One single SLI battery is enough for a small vehicle. But heavy vehicles like highway trucks, tractors etc. that have diesel engines use more than one battery.These batteries are recyclable, for this reason, they are environment friendly too. And through this process, every year a huge number of batteries are produced. There are usually four types of automotive batteries. They are described below shortly:
• Flooded Cell Type: These types ofautomotive batteriesare inexpensive and long lasting. But, they require a lot of maintenance and care. But, they can be leaked or spilled at any moment.
• Valve Regulated Lead Acid: They are the

Know the Matters and Get the Best Benefits from Automotive Batteries

Automobiles need batteries to get electric energy,and for this purpose, automotive batteries were invented. These batteries are rechargeable and small in size, so that they can be set up in automobiles very easily. Especially, an SLI battery is regarded as an automotive battery. SLI means, Starting, Lightning and Ignition. The work of an SLI battery is to supply energy to the starter motor, the lights and the ignition system of an automobile.
Six galvanic cells are used to make these batteries and they are usually lead acid type. At full charge, an automotive battery provides 12.6 volts. One single SLI battery is enough for a small vehicle. But heavy vehicles like highway trucks, tractors etc. that have diesel engines use more than one battery.These batteries are recyclable, for this reason, they are environment friendly too. And through this process, every year a huge number of batteries are produced. There are usually four types of automotive batteries. They are described below shortly:
Flooded Cell Type: These types ofautomotive batteriesare inexpensive and long lasting. But, they require a lot of maintenance and care. But, they can be leaked or spilled at any moment.
Valve Regulated Lead Acid: They are the

Your Finest One Stop Car Service Solution

Car is not merely a personal transportation mode for our use. It is one of the investment types that its condition needs to give a more attention. It has one job to bring us anywhere we desire. No denying that time will prove that it is as fragile as any other thing we have. No matter how expensive and the quality it has thanks to its material choice, it will still be worn off one time in the future. More crucially, as its job is to take us and most of the time the family everywhere, its condition also is an investment of our safety during our trip. Therefore, to keep the car being in its best condition, Goodyear auto repair offers you the best repairs and services for your investment.

Car is a sophisticated investment to own respectfully. It has a lot of part, either those parts which is visible or those one which is hidden deep in the hood. It is not possible just to walk in to your garage, open the car hood, and do some tweak and trick to fix it by yourself. Not only do you will hardly

AARP Applauds El Paso City Council Vote to Restrict Payday and Auto-Title Lenders

Bob Jackson, State Director, AARP Texas offered the following statement on the decision by El Paso City Council to rein in abusive lending practices:

“The El Paso City Council has taken a courageous step today on behalf of its citizens in the face of intense pressure by the payday lending lobby. The ordinance passed today sends a powerful signal that abusive lending practices that trap borrowers in an endless cycle of high-interest debt will not be tolerated in El Paso.

“We applaud City Rep. Susie Byrd for introducing and championing the measure and the City Council for its vote.

“Payday and auto title loan businesses prey on economically vulnerable citizens, offering them ‘fast cash’ loans that can carry fees in excess of 500 percent APR. Families often pay many times over the original amount borrowed for these small dollar loans, leaving them with long-term financial problems.

“By placing limitations on the amount that can be lent and how many times a loan can be renewed, this ordinance gives borrowers a fighting chance to repay loans in a timely manner and avoid being trapped in a cycle of debt.

“Today the City Council stood up for its residents by supporting fair and responsible lending and

Near breakthrough for thermoplastic composites in the automotive industry

Researchers are on the verge of a breakthrough that will allow for the wide-scale use of thermoplastic composites in the automotive industry. These ‘futuristic materials’ are ultra-light, while being strong and rigid and also sustainable and recyclable. Researchers at the ThermoPlastic Composite Research Center (TPRC) in Enschede (Netherlands) were recently successful in overcoming the last hurdle, which was to design practically faultless components and to make the process for doing so predictable. This makes it possible to determine at an early stage of the design process whether a component can be manufactured at all. This means that the two biggest requirements made by the automotive industry, namely weight reduction and reduced costs, can be satisfied.

“All of the large car manufacturers have a need for thermoplastic composites,” says Bert Rietman, business developer at the TPRC and closely involved with the Production Technology chair at the University of Twente. “Products made with these materials can be up to around 40% lighter than the materials usually used in cars and therefore bring great advantages. But many manufacturers are still not keen on these materials. The experience they have gained processing steel, for example, cannot be wholly transferred to composite processing.

Seeing the safe way ahead

Advanced driver-assistance systems (ADASs) can use forward-looking radars, lidars, cameras, and smart control software to anticipate and avoid potential collisions with other vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists, animals and debris. Increasingly they can also detect and identify roadway markings, lanes, road boundaries, and barriers—as well as read traffic signs and traffic lights. Today’s ADAS technology makes possible adaptive cruise controls and emergency braking functions; tomorrow’s will permit hands-free, semi-autonomous highway driving capabilities.

The onboard sensors’ street-view can also be augmented with geo-location data from GPS units and high-resolution road maps, and soon, updates from wireless vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2X) networks.

The Boston Consulting Group predicted earlier this year that by 2025 the market for self-driving cars will have grown $42 billion. ADAS research expertise currently resides in smaller specialists like Nvidia and Canada’s QNX, Tier 1 auto suppliers such as Continental, Delphi, and Bosch—and even Google.

A different viewpoint

One competitor that’s taking a different stance in the budding ADAS sales scrum is Mobileye NV, an Israeli software firm that was co-founded by Amnon Shashua, Sachs Professor of Computing Science at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. A leading artificial intelligence

Can turning off the engine turn customers on

Stop-start systems have seen success in Europe, but development teams focused on the U.S. market are still working to get the right combination of fuel efficiency and comfort. Smooth restarts and radio volume are among for biggest challenges for garnering desired customer satisfaction ratings.

Stop-start is common in Europe and Japan, but acceptance in North America has been limited. The 4-10% fuel savings hasn’t been a big lure given fairly low fuel prices and noticeable noise and shuddering during restarts. That may change as regulations take hold and systems become more sophisticated.

“Adoption has been much slower than people anticipated back in 2007-08, but it should go forward quicker because of the CAFE credits available,” said Devin Lindsay, Powertrain Forecasting Director at IHS Automotive. “Systems have reduced the feeling when the engine engages, and many will have a button that lets the driver turn the function off.”

U.S. carmakers are increasing their offerings. General Motors is making stop-start a standard feature on many 2016 Cadillac models. Customer education and technology are both critical factors in the future of the technology.

“The most challenging part of the stop-start technology is educating the customers so they

BMW, Honda and Yamaha form Connected Motorcycle Consortium

The motorcycle industry recently took a major step toward the “connected bike” when three major OEMs announced the launch of a Connected Motorcycle Consortium to further the development of Cooperative-Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS) applications in motorized two-wheelers.

Officials from BMW Motorrad, Honda, and Yamaha made the joint announcement at the 2015 ITS World Congress in Bordeaux, France. The companies said the new consortium will accelerate development of connected motorcycles and scooters, whose technology development and inclusion in the greater mobility picture have lagged behind the connected-car movement.

The three manufacturers are encouraging other motorcycle OEMs to join the CMC in an effort to standardize C-ITS protocols across the motorcycle industry.

“In order to speed up more motorcycle-specific safety developments, we intend to cooperate to promote a successful implementation of C-ITS in motorcycles and scooters,” said Tetsuo Suzuki, Operating Officer at Honda Motor Co.

The newly formed organization follows the 2014 signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) by all members of the European Association of Motorcycle Manufacturers (ACEM). The MoU states that connected motorcycles will be available for sale beginning 2020.

“Our companies are already active members of the Car2Car Communication Consortium,

New Astra is Opel Vauxhall’s no excuses car

General Motors’ European duo, Opel and Vauxhall, have created a convincingly fresh design and engineering challenge to Volkswagen’s ubiquitous Golf and Ford’s Focus.

It’s no mean feat. Although recent Astra models have been steadily gaining commercial and critical credibility, they generally haven’t managed to attain the overall respect achieved by their archrivals.

But an all-new lightweight vehicle architecture and enhanced chassis and engine capability complemented by impressive added technologies and an interior that provides a surprisingly up-market ambience combine to give the new car added status.

Vauxhall’s UK Ellesmere Port manufacturing facility is the lead plant for the new model (the other is Opel’s Gliwice, Poland factory; design and engineering of the car is centered at Opel Germany) producing both Opel and Vauxhall badged cars in hatchback and wagon (Sports Tourer) configurations.

Depending on the version and its trim level, the latest generation Astra is up to 200 kg (440 lb) lighter than its predecessor. Body-in-white weight is down by about 20% to 280 kg (617 lb).

The new chassis is also lighter by 50 kg (110 lb) despite the fact that it uses no aluminum. Instead, Opel-Vauxhall incorporates high-strength (HS) and ultra-high-strength (HSS)

Engineering a 1000-mph car

Engineering a car designed for a 0-1000 mph (1610 km/h) time of 55 seconds is one of the world’s most unlikely, most daunting, and most exciting challenges. That is the task of Mark Chapman, Chief Engineer of the U.K. supersonic Bloodhound Project and his team, now on course to attempt a new World Land Speed Record that at Mach 1.4 blends automotive and aerospace engineering technologies to achieve a spectacular target never before considered outside the realms of space fiction.

It is eight years since Chapman took a telephone call and made the life-changing decision to join the small, highly specialist project to build on the supersonic success of Thrust SSC, which achieved 763.035 mph (1227.986 km/h) in 2007. It has taken four years longer than planned as the design evolved and hurdles overcome, but now runway test programs are in place starting in the U.K. in March 2016 that will take the Bloodhound car initially to a relatively modest 200 mph (322 km/h) before culminating in scheduled 800-mph (1287-km/h) record-breaking runs in South Africa in October 2016. The 1000-mph record attempt will be in 2017.

An afterburning 90-kN (20,230-lbf) Eurojet EJ200 jet engine as used

Elektrobit, Nvidia, and Infineon team up to tackle safety systems

Advanced driver assistance systems (ADASs) are becoming increasingly complex as developers add capabilities and enhance sophistication. That’s prompted Elektrobit, Nvidia, and Infineon Technologies to team up and offer an ADAS solution that can serve as a development platform for autonomous driving. The solution consists of the Nvidia Drive PX self-driving computer, Infineon’s AURIX 32-bit TriCore, and Elektrobit’s AUTOSAR 4.x-compliant EB tresos software suite.

Nvidia Drive PX makes it possible to analyze and combine multiple HD camera and sensor inputs, while the Aurix real-time processor has enhanced embedded safety and security features. Elektrobit’s tresos software facilitates the integration of Linux and AUTOSAR applications and enables cross-CPU-communication at high safety integrity levels. The companies are addressing many trends, including functional safety, increased computing power, versatile communications, and redundancy.

“Our software runs on a board with two Nvidia Tegra chips and an Infineon Aurix TriCore chip,” said Karsten Hoffmeister, Director of EB’s autonomous initiatives. “The board has CAN, LIN, Ethernet, and FlexRay communications channels, with redundant Ethernet connection paths so if something goes wrong the other channel will be available.”

Combining multiple processors on a board highlights the drive towards a single electronic control unit (ECU) that

GM and LG Corp. partnering for 2017 Bolt EV may create new development model

General Motors announced on October 20 that it is partnering with Korean electronics giant LG Corp. in development of the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV’s entire powertrain and other vehicle subsystems, in a new business relationship that GM engineering executives said could point to a new model for electrified vehicle development.

The GM-LG “joint development agreement” for Bolt involves 11 new and unique components and subsystems, including the battery cells and pack; traction motor (a GM design); power inverter; high-power distribution module; battery heater; accessory power module; power line communications module, infotainment system; and instrument cluster.

Two years ago LG set up a new group, LG Electronics Vehicle Components, that is spearheading the joint effort with GM, according to the group’s Vice President, Ken Chang, who spoke with Automotive Engineering and other media at GM’s Warren, MI, Tech Center. Chang’s group includes engineers and technologists from the broader LG family of companies, including battery maker LG Chem; LG Innotek; LG Display; and LG Electronics. He said LG Electronics has invested more than $250 million in a new facility in Incheon, Korea, dedicated to Bolt product development and production.

The Bolt is

Suppliers struggling to keep pace with faster product cycles, says IHS

More vehicle launches and faster product cycles are re-shaping the global vehicle landscape, and many suppliers are struggling to keep pace, according to IHS Automotive analysts.

From 2016 through 2018, OEMs will production launch a combined 434 vehicles into global markets. That’s nearly 100 more launches than the previous three years’ total, and the dramatically increased activity puts pressure on engineers, tooling, logistics, and the infrastructure. This frenzied pace also occurs amid a shift to shorter product cycles.

“The days of seven- and eight-year vehicle cycles are completely gone. Now it’s a five-year cadence,” Michael Robinet, Managing Director of IHS Automotive, said during the global research and analysis firm’s 2015 fall media briefing at its Southfield, MI offices.

Competitive issues, legislation requirements, and consumer demand are driving the five-year cycle for just about every all-new passenger vehicle, while moderate refresh/mid-cycle enhancements are now occurring every two to three years.

The cycle time is even faster for other modifications that commonly involve exterior lighting, front and rear fascia trim as well as the vehicle cabin’s electronic content.

“We’re integrating all this new content on-the-fly. Most of the software on vehicles is being re-written virtually every year,” said Robinet, “This changes the dynamic of how we launch

Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer maps out the future

Aston Martin is on a straight route towards the introduction of a pure electric model; the replacement of all its current sports cars, starting with the DB11 next year; the addition of a production version of its DBX crossover concept; development of an all-new V12 engine; and leveraging its relationship with Daimler. Hybridization is also on the development agenda.

“On average, there will be a new Aston Martin just about every year from 2016, and if you include derivatives of those models, the time line will average about every nine months. It is going to be pretty intense for us,” CEO Dr. Andy Palmer told Automotive Engineering.

The company is planning to series produce a Lagonda sedan that will compete with Bentley and Rolls-Royce, its design emphasis on the creation of a “low, sleek” sports solution. The limited edition Lagonda Taraf, revealed last year and originally conceived as a product for Middle East buyers, is now being engineered for global sales.

“All of this means that we are now in the midst of very heavy engineering development and manufacturing investments,” added Palmer, an engineer who took over as Aston’s CEO a year ago

Lighter more powerful 3rd gen Pilot debuts Honda’s NPD process

Programs for new re-engineered vehicles pose a great challenge for the engineers and other professionals assigned to them: load the vehicle with more advanced technology, consumer-friendly amenities, and safety features required to meet stringent requirements, all while trimming weight from any area necessary to maintain—or ideally decrease—overall weight compared to the previous generation. The 2016 Honda Pilot development team, faced with said challenge, succeeded brilliantly.

The new three-row SUV is 289 lb (131 kg) lighter—the previous Pilot Touring weighed 4632 lb (2101 kg) vs. the new Pilot Elite, which includes more features but weighs 4343 lb (1970 kg)—while recently earning a 2015 Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

The 2016 Pilot adopts the second generation of Honda’s Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure along with a new “3-bone” underbody frame design and new hot-stamped ultra-high strength steel (UHSS) door rings.

Located under the front floor of the Pilot, the 3-bone structure improves impact load management, directing energy around the passenger cabin in the event of a frontal collision. The structure creates three different load pathways that channel collision energy. One channels collision forces from the front of the vehicle

Harman CTO discusses cutting edge HMI design

Business Insider Intelligence forecasts that 75% of the estimated 92 million cars shipped globally in 2020 will be built with Internet-connected hardware. Imagine all the data going in and out of each system embedded into millions of vehicles and what this means for user interaction.

With all of these data come the critical need for safety and strategic design to ensure proper consumption. How does the system know what data are intended for the driver or for the system itself? Does it make driving more complex or, worse, more distracting?

How these systems are designed to expose information to drivers and passengers through their human-machine interface (HMI) systems is critically important to the vehicle of the future. Without an intuitive approach and design, we, as inventors and engineers of new in-vehicle technology, could ultimately detract drivers’ attention from the road, putting everyone at risk.

There is a larger conversation needed on how future-looking HMI designers and engineers can work toward more innovative and user-friendly solutions that minimize distractions on the road and maximize efficiency of information going in and out of connected vehicles. There are four main considerations to tackle these concerns:

It’s more than just the eyes

EDAG CEO discusses the innovative concepts behind the Light Cocoon

The EDAG Light Cocoon was developed with a visionary approach towards a compact, dynamic sports car, with a fully bionically optimized, additively manufactured vehicle structure combined with a weatherproof textile outer skin.

The core idea of the concept is not to regard the body as a closed surface. Instead, an approach was adopted in which material was only actually used in areas where it was necessary for function, safety, and stiffness.

Simulation on the basis of a series bonnet

To first of all quantify and then verify the lightweight potential of a bionically designed structure, this approach was previously used, for example, in the design of the bonnet of a production vehicle, and then calculated. The point of the calculations was to confirm requirements, e.g. with regard to torsional and flexural stiffness and pedestrian protection.

A very simple geometry for the structure of the bonnet is not able to withstand the dynamic load cases, e.g. to meet head-impact specifications, as the hole pattern is too open. The diagram [in the upper-right-hand corner] shows the geometry that will meet the requirements of the head-impact test.

A topological CAE calculation simulation result confirmed that the basic stability requirements were met,

Castrol’s removable oil cell heralds 90-s oil changes, reduced friction and CO2

The sight and sound of Aston Martin’s exotic 600-kW (805-hp) £1.5M Vulcan thundering around the Paul Ricard High-Tech Test Track in the South of France is spectacular. But on board the supercar, out of sight and making absolutely no sound, is a modest plastic container that promises to bring a major advance in engine lubrication technology and servicing.

Developed by Castrol, the Nexcel oil cell is in effect a removable one-piece engine oil tank and filter that integrates with the powertrain. But there is far more to it than that. It delivers several significant benefits: a complete engine oil change in 90 s, reduction of friction losses, a “significant” cut in CO2 emissions, easy use of bespoke, precision-engineered oils to suit specific particular engines, and far better sustainability.

Its test program in the ultra-high performance and exclusive (only 24 will be built) Vulcan, is a demanding technology demonstration that is proving very successful, Castrol Nexcel Chief Engineer Oliver Taylor, told Automotive Engineering: “We expect to see production road vehicle installations in two to five years with high volume use following. Vulcan gets us onto the technology implementation curve.”

By 2020-25, he foresees

Power struggle produces eSupercharger

With the bold claim of inventing the “world’s most power-dense variable speed electric motor,” U.K. specialist company Aeristech believes it can help solve a significant challenge facing the use of downsized engines in pursuit of low CO2 emissions.

Said CEO Bryn Richards: “For extreme engine downsizing neither multi-stage nor mechanical superchargers are the answer, as an engine using them would lack power at low speeds. To support the next generation of downsized engines requires an electric supercharger with enough power to supply all the low speed boosting needs of the engine combined with sufficiently effective cooling to enable continuous operation.”

Thus the development of the Aeristech eSupercharger, designed to provide the low-speed torque and instant throttle response that customers expect but can be challenging to achieve in turbocharged downsized and “right-sized” engines.

Richards explains that multi-stage turbocharging, combining large and small turbos, makes downsized engines easier to drive across a wider speed range, but introduces other issues such as cost, complexity, thermal management, and catalyst performance. The latter, he noted, is likely to be of growing significance as tailpipe emissions are further restricted: “The thermal mass of a two-stage turbocharger system located between the engine and the catalyst makes light-off

Frictionless engine seals

Freudenberg-NOK Sealing Technologies has announced its first major order for its new generation of automotive seals. The frictionless Levitex seals, a subject of a long research and development process, will go into an engine for a global platform in 2017. The new seals function with a cushion of air, reducing both fuel consumption and CO2 emissions—by as much as 1 g/km driven, the company claims. Levitex seals initially will be produced in Europe although the company plans to expand product into North America in the future. A Levitex seal consists of two rings, one of which is firmly attached to the crankshaft and the other to the crankcase. One of the rings has grooves that are just a few micrometers deep. When the crankshaft rotates, the air is dragged against the sealing dam that encloses the grooves. The grooves taper to a closed tip and thus represent a cul-de-sac for the enclosed air. This produces a cushion of air that separates one sealing surface from the other, making possible a nearly frictionless seal for the shaft. Until now, gas-lubricated mechanical face seals were exclusively used in major industrial facilities, according to Freudenberg-NOK. The supplier’s new patented design and its associated production process allow the