Features added to Dana Spicer tire pressure control system

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Dana Corp.’s Commercial Vehicle Systems group has enhanced its Dana Spicer Tire Pressure Control System (TPCS) with a new integrated Driver Display Module (DDM) that, in conjunction with new dash-mounted rocker switches, is designed to simplify the selection of tire pressures to maximize vehicle mobility under varying load and terrain conditions.

“These additions have resulted in a more convenient and user-friendly way to select the best tire pressure for vehicles, particularly mixers, engaged in a variety of on- and off-highway applications,” says Jim Beverly, chief engineer for advanced chassis control systems for Dana’s Commercial Vehicle Systems group. “In addition, the smaller footprint of the DDM and rocker switch interface provides much more flexibility for OEMs in regards to dash layouts.”

The Spicer Tire Pressure Control System is available on most makes and models of vocational heavy-duty trucks manufactured in North America. It is described as the only system with air seals built into the axles that eliminate the need for external air lines for reliable, trouble-free performance.

The newly designed driver interface supports two load modes — loaded and unloaded — and three terrain selections — highway, off-highway and emergency. The highway mode permits high-speed travel on paved surfaces; off-highway allows for efficient operation on unpaved surfaces; while the emergency mode is designed to provide extremely low tire pressures to tackle poor terrains and grades that might otherwise be impossible to negotiate without assistance. The six separate settings are designed to allow for smooth, trouble-free navigation over a wide variety of road surfaces and load conditions.

“Over the years, Dana’s TPCS has proved to be an intelligent alternative to all-wheel drive systems in sand or soft soil applications and also results in lighter weight, lower cost, less maintenance, improved fuel efficiency and optimum vehicle operation,” Beverly says.

In addition to communicating and displaying operating conditions such as the selected load and terrain, the DDM unit is designed to display tire pressure by axle group, as well as over-speed and low tire (run-flat) operation. In the event the system recognizes a fault condition, the DDM will report problem areas to help bring about fast, accurate solutions, the company says. TPCS functions with a microprocessor-based electronic control unit and supports industry standard diagnostic tools, including the new PC application-based Dana Diagnostic Tool (DDT).

Additional TPCS benefits, according to Dana, include:

  • The elimination of more than 1,000 pounds of vehicle weight;
  • Improved vehicle stability and better accessibility to the cab that results from a 12- to 14-inch reduction of the vehicle’s height;
  • Overall reductions in vehicle cost, complexity and required maintenance; and
  • Extended tire life and improved fuel economy that results from maintaining proper tire pressure.
  • TPCS systems are OEM-installed and thereby fully warranted for reliable performance, Beverly says. Most tandem-drive axles (40,000 to 52,000 pounds) and single-drive axles (21,000 to 26,000 pounds), as well as steer and trailer axles, may be equipped with TPCS.

    For more information, go to www.roadranger.com.