Continental has announced that its new Ansible Motion Delta S3 dynamic driving simulator for tires is now operational. An intensive internal test phase of around twelve months preceded the operational phase. Going forward, the driving simulator will be used for new and further tire developments, especially in the original equipment business.
Virtual tire tests will save raw materials and shorten development times. The high-tech Driver-in-the-Loop (DIL) simulator calculates the exact driving dynamics parameters for the tires and the respective test vehicle. Thanks to its high maneuverability, the DIL simulator can provide Continental’s professional test drivers with subjective driving impressions that are comparable to those from tire tests on a real test track.
Bernd Korte, Head of Passenger Tire Development for Continental’s original equipment business, states:
Virtual development methods enable us to offer solutions even more efficiently and more precisely tailored to the needs and requirements of our customers. Virtual test kilometers also play a major part in conserving valuable resources. With our new driving simulator, we can shorten development times and optimize the use of resources in production and logistics.
Here's how the virtual testing works: The DIL simulator calculates the exact driving dynamics parameters for the tires and the corresponding test vehicle. Continental loads the relevant tire model for the customer’s specific vehicle model into the simulator. The tire model contains precise information on the tire design, tread, and rubber compound. The test driver thus drives a dedicated tire model for a specific vehicle model variant, as was previously the case on the physical test track. The developers can digitally adjust the tire parameters of the test tire at any time.
Every test cycle that is completed in the driving simulator instead of on real roads means fewer test tires that need to be produced. The investment in this new testing technology thus also adds to Continental’s extensive sustainability activities. The company’s goal is to become the most progressive tire manufacturer in being environmentally and socially responsible. To this end, Continental is investing significantly in innovative technologies such as DIL simulation, as well as sustainable products and services along its entire value chain.
Julian Kroeber, who is responsible for the DIL simulator at Continental, adds:
With our driving simulator, we evaluate and optimize a tire before we physically build it for the first time. This allows us to further optimize our development process. It also saves a lot of time for our customers.
The driving simulator is located on the grounds of the Contidrom, Continental’s main test center in Germany, located about 40 km north of Hanover in the Südheide region. The tire test facility has been an important part of Continental’s research and development department since its foundation in 1967. Car, truck, and motorcycle tires are tested intensively here.
Read the full story (and view photos and videos) on the Continental website.