Detroit—Keeping passengers cool in the 2001 PT Cruiser was a design challenge involving efficiency. The 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine taking up only 148.2 inch3 total volume necessitated designing a special air conditioning accumulator that would fit into a confined area.
The accumulator from Parker Hannifin Corp. (Lyon, NY) uses a patented helix design that improves oil circulation. "The helix design provides a swirling and stirring motion that helps keep the oil and refrigerant mixture consistent," says Cary Horamoto, engineering manager of Parker Hannifin's refrigeration and air conditioning division. Keeping the mixture consistent reduces the amount of oil needed for charging the system, creating a cost savings for DaimlerChrysler.
Design collaboration now includes the entire value chain. From suppliers to customers, purchasing to outside experts, the collaborative design team includes internal and external groups. The design process now stretches across the globe in multiple software formats.
A new high-pressure injection-molding technology produces near-net shape parts with 2-inch-thick walls from high-performance materials like PEEK, PAI, and carbon-filled polymers. Parts show no voids, sinks, or porosity, have more consistent mechanical properties, and are stronger.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.