The 100 millionth dual mass flywheel (DMF) has left the production line at the automotive supplier LuK in Bühl (Germany), which is part of the Schaeffler Group.
This successful vibration damper has now been manufactured for three decades at three locations: At its headquarters in Bühl since the introduction of the DMF in 1985, in Szombathely, Hungary since 2000 and in Taicang, China since 2007. “The development of the dual mass flywheel is one of the outstanding innovations in our company`s almost 50-year history and has emerged as a ground-breaking product for the automotive industry and as a key technology for sustainable mobility, which is required more than ever today“, said Matthias Zink, President of the Transmission Systems business division, during the celebrations to mark this manufacturing milestone. Dr. Wolfgang Reik, the former development manager at LuK, explained that success was not foreseeable at the outset and that one mus t also be a passionate inventor in order to overcome the initial obstacles. Zink added: “The decisive factor for our success is the motivation of our engineers who are shaping the mobility for tomorrow now, and were also doing it 30 years ago by successfully developing the DMF.“
The first customer for the DMF was the automobile manufacturer BMW in 1985.
The DMF allows driving in fuel-efficient operating points with increased auditory comfort, and therefore makes a contribution to reducing CO2 emissions and fuel consumption. This was and still is the decisive factor for the market success of a product. The first vehicle on the market with a dual mass flywheel from LuK was the BMW 525e.
The DMF has undergone continuous further development, which has increased the performance of the component during a continuous story of success that has lasted 30 years. A very significant increase in vibration damping was achieved by integrating a centrifugal pendulum-type absorber. This groundbreaking technology, which was introduced in 2008, increases the damping capacity in the DMF by adding a further speed-adaptive component. The pendulum replaces the internal damper of a conventional DMF and therefore has almost no effect on the design space. DMFs with centrifugal pendulum-type absorber can be used wherever conventional DMFs were fitted. Together with the basic isolation of the vibrations by the spring mass system of the DMF, this achieves isolation levels of more than 90 percent. As a result, engines can be operated even at low speeds in a very smooth and comfortable way that allows the transmission ratio to be made longer and thus designed for greater efficiency in te rms of fuel consumption. This applies for both manual and double clutch transmissions.