Antrim, UK A US Court of Appeals decision forcing an immediate review of automobile industry standards for tire pressure monitoring systems has been welcomed by Schrader Electronics, a Northern Ireland based designer of radio-frequency based remote tire pressure monitoring systems (RTPMS).
Schrader has lobbied extensively in favour of direct systems as it says these systems have already proved their superior safety performance and are readily available today at an affordable price.The US appeals court has overturned the tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) rule and ordered the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to craft a new one. The court felt that the agency's regulation permitting both 'direct' and 'indirect' TPMS to be installed on new vehicles was 'arbitrary and capricious' because it let the OEMs decide which technology to deploy.
Direct systems place electronic sensors inside the tires which send accurate pressure readings to a receiver in the car, while indirect systems monitor pressure using the antilock brakes system (ABS) to measure the wheel rotation speed. The original ruling scheduled a date of November 2006 for a final decision to be made on which TPMS requirement would be implemented, but the revised ruling now forces the NHTSA to take more timely action on the matter.
Carl Wacker, Vice-President of Marketing and Sales at Schrader, said, “Direct systems have come a long way since NHTSA's initial ruling in 2000 and most OEMs will actually find that system costs have reduced substantially in the past couple of years to well below industry estimates of $120 per system. By model year 2007 it is envisaged that integrated direct systems costs could be below $50. In addition to this, doubts about direct TPMS supplier capacity are unfounded. Schrader Electronics and its competitors have all been preparing for large volume production and capacity is already in place for the prior planned phase in requirement dates set by NHTSA for November 2006.”