Bridgestone, Microsoft Create Intelligent Tyre Monitoring System

Bridgestone and Microsoft have collaborated to develop a world-first monitoring system for detecting tyre damage issues in real-time, a problem that contributes to around 30 per cent of all car accidents caused by technical failure.

Bridgestone says its Tyre Damage Monitoring System (TDMS) delivers real-time awareness of damage by using the Microsoft Connected Vehicle Platform (MCVP) cloud framework along with existing sensor data, from hardware already installed, and uses algorithms to detect events affecting the tyre surface and carcass. The driver can then be immediately notified of the hazard and act accordingly to remedy the situation. According to the company, there is currently no other equivalent monitoring system available in the market as alternatives would require extra hardware to be installed.

Bridgestone says tyre issues have four main forms: inadequate pressure, fatigue, irregular wear, and damage from curbs, potholes or items on the road. However, most of these issues can already be reliably mitigated. Tyre pressure monitoring systems have been mandatory in several jurisdictions, including the USA and EU, for many years now, while regular service and replacing tyres in time will guard against wear and fatigue.

Bridgestone says the exception and safety gap has been tyre damage. Tyre damage often cannot be detected without close inspection, can potentially occur at any time and lead to accidents. It can also negatively affect other vehicle components, like damage to the wheels, and can then create a larger source of potential danger to motorists.

According to the company, the TDMS both understands when and where damage has occurred, allowing for broader insight into road conditions and infrastructure which can be used to alert the appropriate agencies of the presence and location of potholes and other hazards.

Bridgestone’s TDMS is available to all vehicle fleets and OEMs that use MCVP. The partnership with Microsoft also enables Bridgestone to further develop its solution to meet the requirements of fleets and key OEM partners around the world.

BASF Develops Virtual ‘AUVOT’ Shapes

BASF’s coating division has developed virtual AUVOT (Automotive Vehicle of Trends) shapes to help gain a realistic impression of colours, effects, and surfaces on a complete car during the early design phase.

BASF says AUVOTs display the interaction between colour and geometry, and the importance of light in the digital world of automotive coatings, helping manufacturers understand the impact of colour in industrial design in one shape with two distinct sides.

The company says it has introduced four different AUVOTs shapes which stand for various car segments in the automotive market – from compact cars to SUVs. Each of the shapes represent distinct automotive features that reveal effect highlights on the edges, showcasing dramatic flop behaviour at the same time. BASF says that while one side of the automotive geometry simulates various elements that can be found on every car, the other side features spectacular unreal formations that reveal the potential of automotive coating and give surprising insights on the behaviour of a colour.

“To visualise and display all elements relevant to coatings – such as the colour itself, the effect and the surface – is already challenging in the real world and requires deep knowledge,” said Florina Trost, Senior Designer Automotive Coatings Solutions EMEA at BASF. “Translating this knowledge into the virtual world and bridging those two worlds opens a new field of work. Our mission was the technically correct and primary realistic appearance of paint as well as a persuasive portrayal of a colour concept on the right shape.”

Representing elements of BASF’s dome shapes and panels, which will still be used to present future trends, the virtual 3D shapes are intended to support designers who will evaluate automotive colours for the upcoming model year. The company says AUVOTs are a valuable tool for OEM designers and BASF’s internal coatings experts to speed up and perfect the overall colour design process, as they are no longer solely dependent on physical samples that need to be painted and shipped. BASF added that the digital twin of a real colour concept can also be used as a starting point for further discussions with its designers, helping to develop unique shades that perfectly fit to the OEM’s models and also underline the value of the automotive brand. This is why the digital geometries of the AUVOTs have a minimum amount of trim parts to interrelate with transportation design.

The AUVOTs are part of BASF’s digital paint competence, complementing its AUROOM digital platform which gives OEM designers access to the database of photo-realistic virtual car colours and tools.

Axalta Introduces CS220 Percotop Antislip Additive

Axalta has developed an anti-slip additive for industrial applications to combat wet weather.

Axalta says the CS220 Percotop Antislip Additive creates a safe, slip-resistant surface by adding texture to the primer and topcoat without changing the colour, performance, or properties of the paint. The process for using the additive is simple – it can be combined with existing industrial primer or topcoat mix and can be sprayed through conventional spraying equipment. There is no additional waste, mess or inconsistent distribution, and no additional drying time.

Based on Axalta technology, the CS220 additive has only recently been introduced into the Australian market and initially was designed to provide anti-slip surfaces on vehicles and modules for the Department of Defence Land 121 3(b) contract. Axalta says the additive meets Australian Standard 4586:2013 and German Ramp Test DIN 51130.

For more information on the Axalta CS220 Percotop Antislip Additive, contact your local Axalta distributor.

A surface coated with CS220 Percotop Antislip Additive.

Axalta Launches Advanced Color Proofing

Axalta has announced the launch of Advanced Color Proofing, the latest enhancement to its colour retrieval software, ColorNet. The company says the upgrade provides greater insight into a colour’s blendability and saves body shops time and money.

“Advanced Color Proofing allows collision customers to view paint colours and digitally rotate them on 3D vehicle renderings to determine colour match and blendability across panels,” said Troy Weaver, Vice President of Axalta, Global Refinish. “Advanced Color Proofing reduces the need to paint multiple test panels to achieve the desired appearance, which saves time and materials and maximises productivity in the body shop.

“We are dedicated to making colour formula retrieval and match as accurate and easy as possible for collision centres. By adding Advanced Color Proofing to ColorNet, we are extending our software platform to include 3D modelling, which will transform how colour blendability is determined and enhance the user experience for our customers.”

In addition to ColorNet, Axalta says it offers a range of colour tools that are developed with advanced technology to help maximise efficiency and profitability, such as its Acquire Quantum EFX spectrophotometer.


Axalta has confirmed that ColorNet is not available in Australia.

CAPA Creates Standard For Vehicle Sensors

The Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA), a non-profit standard-setting and certification organisation for automotive collision repair parts, has announced its new Standard 703 for automotive sensors.

The standard contains requirements for function, performance, durability, ingress protection, electrical, mechanical, climate, electromagnetic compatibility, fit, dimensionality, appearance and materials. CAPA says it’s applicable to ultrasonic park distance control sensors but may also be expanded to include other types of sensors in the future.

The association believes the growing trend of advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) means that more vehicles use sensors to assist with parking and low speed manoeuvring. CAPA estimates that rear parking sensors will be present in nearly 40 per cent of registered vehicles in 2021 and will increase up to 95 per cent over the next two decades.

CAPA says it created Standard 703 because of feedback from the collision repair industry and includes demonstrated compliance to applicable sections of ISO 17386 and ISO 22840 for function and performance, as well as ADAS-related requirements not addressed by ISO standards. The association says all CAPA-certified sensors undergo extensive testing to demonstrate comparability to OEM service parts.

“CAPA’s goal is to provide the auto repair industry with a reliable, trusted means for identifying replacement parts comparable to parts from the original equipment manufacturer,” said Clark Plucinski, Chairman at CAPA. “As parking sensors become more prevalent in automobiles, the collision repair industry, insurers and consumers require peace of mind in having access to quality, safe and affordable replacement sensors. We are thrilled to offer our new standard to fit this need.”

Axalta Introduces 1K Waterborne Stonechip Guard

Axalta says its new 1K Waterborne Stonechip Guard is designed to extend the lifespan of commercial vehicles on the road.

According to Axalta, 1K Waterborne Stonechip Guard is a highly flexible coating that provides excellent protection against damage caused by stones and other day-to-day road debris. It also acts as an anti-corrosive barrier for vehicle underbodies.

“This product is a great addition to our portfolio,” said Michael Busch, OEM and Military Manager at Axalta Australia. “It will allow our commercial vehicle customers to keep their vehicles on the road for longer. This is especially important for those whose livelihoods rely on their vehicles being in service on the road rather than in the repair shop for maintenance.”

Axalta says the product is easy to apply using conventional spraying equipment, is touch dry 30 minutes after application, and can be recoated after two hours at room temperature. The product’s waterborne nature makes it easier to clean up and provides better working conditions for painters.

For more information, contact your local Axalta distributor or call 1800 292 582.

AIC Opens Additive Manufacturing Centre

Auto Innovation Centre (AIC) has unveiled its new facility which provides additive manufacturing, a crucial component of the centre’s capability.

The AIC says additive manufacturing allows designers to test product fitment, identify issues or potential design problems and to study, improve and optimise. 3D printers can produce intricate and difficult designs that are not simple or cheaply replicated with regular equipment or production techniques.

The AIC’s new Additive Manufacturing Centre has three different printers, each providing different options for automotive product developers to suit their requirements.

AIC said for companies that are prototyping or want to produce small production runs, the HP Jet Fusion 580 Colour can create strong, useable parts and can print in colour.  An example of a part created in the 3D printer is a brake duct which is intricate and has a thin wall, making it well suited to additive manufacturing.

The company says it has purchased a 3D Systems Figure 4 for smaller part prototyping, short production runs and quality creations with a high level of surface detail. The Figure 4 uses stereolithography to create parts that may ordinarily be injection moulded, and a variety of resins are available to produce parts with varying flexibility, from rubberised to nylon.

AIC added that the Stratasys F370 is an FDM machine with a large build bed, capable of producing larger creations quickly and is another strong option for prototyping. Typical uses for the machine are large packaging studies where bulk volume accuracy is more important than detailed surface finish.

“Additive manufacturing is an integral part of our new product development,” said Heath Moore, General Manager at Harrop Engineering. “It is critical for us being able to get to market sooner with a product that has been tested and validated before full production occurs. The result is savings in time and costs throughout our production process.”

The AIC additive manufacturing facilities have an in-house fleet of new production vehicles and a fully equipped workshop. Companies will be able to get 3D scan information and measurements to assist CAD creation. After printing, companies can test-fit products to the AIC fleet vehicles.

“Our purpose is to assist business to bring products to market,” said Luke Truskinger, Managing Director at AIC. “Additive manufacturing is one important service offering that provides new opportunities to aftermarket companies across Australia.”

Colad Unveils Snap Lid System For SMART Repairs

Colad has released a small version of its Snap Lid system which is specifically designed for SMART repairs.

The system is available in two versions, 130 and 190 microns, and each system is comprised of 50 Snap Lids, 50 mixing cups and 10 sealing caps. The system is designed to enable quick and cost-effective repair to an area with small cosmetic damage by focusing on damage in a small localised area without needing to repaint the entire panel.

Colad says the solution takes less time and effort and reduces the cost of material and paint. Additionally, the cups are made of advanced durable plastic which makes them quite strong.

For more information, visit

Nouryon Introduces Ingredient To Improve Battery Performance

Nouryon has begun the first deliveries of AkuPure, a carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC) polymer designed to improve the performance of lithium-ion batteries, which are skyrocketing in demand due to increased consumer interest in electric vehicles.

Nouryon says AkuPure is an ultra-high-purity CMC that improves the electrode coating process, making the battery more efficient by helping it to retain and deliver power more effectively. CMC is a sustainable polymer derived from cellulose sources such as wood or cotton that is used as a thickener, binder and rheology modifier in markets ranging from mining to pharmaceuticals.

“Customers in this market require ultrapure CMC [and] impurities can interfere with the performance of the battery or with production efficiency,” said Geert-Jan Beijering, Nouryon Product Director. “AkuPure has a number of properties key to the battery production process, such as the speed at which it dissolves and its low level of insolubles. The possibility to frequently charge and discharge a battery without losing performance under various temperature conditions is what matters most to our customers in this segment.”

“Our R&D team worked extremely hard to create a top-tier version of AkuPure, and this is the right time to bring this technology to market,” said Larry Ryan, Nouryon Americas Executive Vice President and President of Performance Formulations. “Demand for lithium-ion batteries continues to rise, and as battery manufacturers struggle to find CMC that meet the stringent demands of the industry, we are introducing a more advanced solution.”

Nouryon recently announced plans to acquire CMC business J.M. Huber Corporation, which the company hopes will significantly broaden its portfolio of CMC products.

Hyundai, Kia Develop First Predictive Shift System

Hyundai and Kia have announced their development of the “world’s first predictive Information and Communication Technology (ICT) connected shift system”, which enables the vehicle to automatically shift to the optimal gear after identifying the road and traffic conditions ahead.

According to the two companies, the system uses intelligent software in the Transmission Control Unit (TCU) that collects and interprets real-time input from other technology, such as including 3D navigation, cameras and radar. The TCU then predicts the optimal shift scenario for real-time driving situations through an artificial intelligence algorithm and shifts the gears accordingly. For example, when a relatively long slowdown is expected and radar detects no speed irregularities with the car ahead, the transmission clutch temporarily switches to neutral mode to improve fuel efficiency.

“Vehicles are evolving beyond simple mobility devices into smart mobility solutions,” said Intelligent Drivetrain Control Research Lab head, Byeong Wook Jeon. “Even a traditional area of the automobile, such as the powertrain, is becoming a high-tech technology optimised for smart mobility through efforts to integrate ICT and artificial intelligence technologies.”

The companies tested a vehicle with the ICT connected shift system on a heavily curved road, resulting in the frequency of shifts in cornering being reduced by around 43 per cent compared to vehicles without the system. The system also reduced the frequency of brake operation by about 11 per cent, minimising driving fatigue and brake wear.

Hyundai and Kia say they are planning to further develop the ICT connected shift system into an even more intelligent transmission technology that can communicate with traffic signals based on LTE or 5G communication, along with identifying drivers’ tendencies, to further refine gear-shift control.