Meritor WABCO Unveils New Trailer Stability Enhancement System

Meritor WABCO Vehicle Control Systems introduced its new Roll Stability Support trailer system, RSSplus, designed specifically for the North American trailer industry to offer more advanced features and added value.

RSSplus will be available in late first quarter 2008 through trailer original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and as an aftermarket retrofit through trailer OEM dealers.

The new system builds upon the company's current RSS offering, which incorporates its industry-leading ABS functionality with other pertinent safety features such as improved roll mitigation. The system retains Meritor WABCO's field-proven, side-by-side wheel-end control, which provides superior stability management and helps prevent tire flat spotting and abnormal tire wear. Additionally, the system offers simplified installation and advanced "intelligent" communication capabilities through on-board data recording with event broadcasting capability via Power Line Carrier (PLC) communications or telematic devices.

"As pioneers of this significant technology, we are pleased to be bringing the next echelon of trailer stability capabilities to the marketplace at a more reasonable cost," said Jon Morrison, president and general manager of Meritor WABCO Vehicle Control Systems. "With the largest population of trailer stability systems in place today, this new system is the culmination of valuable customer feedback and the work of our industry-leading engineering teams."

Meritor WABCO introduced its first trailer stability system, RSS, in 2003. Today, there are over 4,000 of the company's units in place with several OEMs adopting the technology as standard equipment on their trailers.

RSSplus is a premium 2-modulator (2M) roll mitigation system that integrates several features, including ABS and PLC functionality, reducing individual component requirements. The new system is also compatible for use with spring suspensions, as well as air ride suspensions.

A new cable connector system allows for more positive connections and cable stabilization to prevent damage and mitigate potential problems with connector corrosion.

Standardized SAE diagnostics make troubleshooting much simpler and are now a conventional feature of the system. The diagnostics have also been integrated into the company's TOOLBOX PC software. System diagnostics can also be performed using standard blink codes which eliminate the cost of additional diagnostic tools.

By adding Power Line Carrier (PLC) capability to the RSSplus electronic control unit (ECU), the system can communicate between the tractor and trailer utilizing a PLC display. Additional messaging can also be accommodated via telematic devices. Examples of events that can be communicated include suspension weight, tire pressure, wheel-end temperatures or other customer-specific data. On-board data recording within the ECU allows for the retention of vehicle performance data in the ECU memory to enhance fleet management. Such "intelligent" data can be utilized to help improve operating efficiencies.

Configurations of the new system include: 2S/2M1, 4S/2M and 4S/2M + 1 (for most 4S/3M requirements). Applications include vans, reefer units, flat beds, tankers, hazardous material haulers, B-trains and high center of gravity trailers. Design of the new system includes capabilities that are compatible with current tractor stability technologies as well as future technologies. RSSplus is also backward-compatible with existing trailers in the marketplace making it an ideal retrofit technology.

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