Meritor WABCO debuts SmartTrac stability control systems family

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Meritor WABCO Vehicle Control Systems on Wednesday, July 8, introduced SmartTrac, a suite of antilock braking, automatic traction control and stability control systems for commercial vehicles. According to the company, SmartTrac uses advanced electronic control units with enhanced capabilities to help North American truck operators with more options to meet their operational needs.

“SmartTrac fits perfectly with our Pyramid of Safety concept,” says Jon Morrison, president and general manager of Meritor WABCO, based in Troy, Mich. “It provides a broad base for controlling braking and stability control technologies now and in the future.”

The SmartTrac family of stability control systems currently is available immediately as a factory-installation option at several truck, tractor and trailer OEMs. The family encompasses antilock braking systems (ABS), automatic traction control (ATC) and stability control systems, all designed for vehicle applications like commercial trucks and trailers, construction, fire and rescue, bus and coach, and military.

According to Meritor WABCO, SmartTrac integrates the company’s active safety systems technologies:

Electronic Stability Control (ESC), released in 2005 by Meritor WABCO, combines Roll Stability Control (RSC) with the added capability of yaw or rotational control. ESC can reduce the risk of the vehicle instability while in a slippery curve or taking an evasive action, preventing jack-knife and drift-out conditions through select braking of the tractor and application of the trailer brakes. If loss of stability is detected, tractor-trailer speed is reduced through engine control and application of the engine brake, tractor and trailer foundation brakes. Currently, Meritor WABCO has installed ESC in thousands of heavy-duty trucks and specialty vehicles;

Roll Stability Control (RSC) provides the highest value of vehicle rollover stability with the fewest components, maintenance requirements and lowest cost. It continually monitors conditions that can lead to a rollover and can automatically de-throttle the engine and apply the engine brake, and drive and trailer axle foundation brakes to reduce tractor-trailer speed when lateral acceleration limits are about to be exceeded. Currently, the company has systems in 60,000 vehicles;

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RSSplus is an advanced two-modulator valve, trailer-only stability control system that integrates with the trailer’s antilock braking system. It continually calculates the trailer’s roll stability threshold based on load and measures actual lateral acceleration (side-to-side movements) and individual wheel speeds. When conditions indicate that a rollover may occur, the system automatically intervenes by reducing engine torque and engaging the engine retarder, while automatically applying drive axle and trailer brakes to slow the vehicle and assist the driver in maintaining control. RSSplus is an ideal solution for retrofit applications for fast implementation of stability control protection;

Monitoring and telematics: Communicating over the tractor’s data bus, status messages can be relayed to an onboard computer with telematics capabilities. Fleet managers at home can correlate stability control and braking events with precise time and location data; and

Improved diagnostics and event recording: The SmartTrac family of ECUs can capture data about braking and stability control events and create a record of accurate, detailed information that fleet managers can use to identify trends and build more effective driver training programs.