Business Unit Manager, Miba Friction Group
Degree: Part-time degree program parallel to employment
Industrial engineering, University of Applied Sciences in Mittweida
Graduate of the Miba Leadership Academy 2010
Head of R&D, Miba Friction Group
Degree: Mechanical engineering/automotive technology,
University of Applied Sciences in Cologne
Graduate of the Miba Leadership Academy 2012
A glimpse into the international engine and automotive industries
Motorsports has always been at the heart of the brand KTM, a point impressively proven by over 220 world championship titles.
The latest material and technology developments are tested and refined under the most extreme conditions. Driven by the corporate philosophy READY TO RACE, the expertise earned through motorsports is applied directly to series production. KTM produces over 100,000 motorcycles annually, and clutch packages from the Miba Friction Group are installed in over half of these.
In 2012, KTM won the rider’s world championship title on asphalt in the Moto3 road racing series. Gerald Schachinger and Falk Nickel provide an account of a world-class Miba product development project for KTM.
When the customer approached Miba, what was their specific concern?
Since 2012, Moto3 has replaced the 125 ccm class in the motorcycle world championship. Upon the introduction of the new 250 ccm four-stroke engine, the race no longer allows a replacement motorcycle. In addition, technical regulations require that the gearbox has no more than six gears. Per gear, up to two different transmission ratios can be selected. Electromechanical and electrohydraulic clutches are not permitted. As a result, clutches have to be even more stable and reliable. KTM approached us with the invitation to work with them from the beginning in developing the new engines. Together with the customer, we developed customized solutions. In this case, this involved clutch packages capable of allowing precision control of the power transfer at the critical interface between the combustion engine and the power train. For the driver, this means a better gear shift feeling.
How does a product development process such as this work?
We work with the customer to develop a design based on calculations, simulations and experience. Next, we provide initial prototypes to the customer, and these are tested on site on a test bench and in the vehicle. The design is optimized and sampled in a series of feedback loops with the customer until the project objectives have been met. The series design is validated during series start-up.
What are the reasons in favor of Miba as a development partner?
As a development partner, Miba is accessible to the manufacturer. Our motto says it best: “in the kitchen of the customer.” Individual solutions are developed through the close cooperation between the customer, the Miba Key Account Management, Miba Application Engineering and the Miba Research and Development department. Our sales always has its eyes and ears on the market, our application engineers know what the customer needs, and our Research and Development department provides sophisticated solutions. We have a reputation as a trustworthy innovation partner, who supplies ideas and realizes them as well.