Zytek win EGS contract for 2007 Acura ALMS Electrically-operated gearshift system to be supplied to Acura endurance race teams Motorsport engineering specialist Zytek is to supply their electrically- operated gearshift system (EGS) to Acura...
Zytek win EGS contract for 2007 Acura ALMS
Electrically-operated gearshift system to be supplied to Acura endurance race teams
Motorsport engineering specialist Zytek is to supply their electrically- operated gearshift system (EGS) to Acura teams for their assault on the American Le Mans Series next year. Acura will be involved with three teams in 2007, all competing in the LMP2 class using 3.4 litre V8 engines fitted with EGS.
The Zytek EGS is lighter and simpler than alternative pneumatic or hydraulic systems and the all-electric operation offers reliability, straightforward integration and improved gearbox life. The EGS can produce individual gearshifts in less than 40ms and up to five downshifts in less than one second.
The precise movement of the electric actuators also means that there is very little wear on the gear selector mechanism and dog rings, extending gearbox life and improving reliability and shifting accuracy. The fully electric approach removes the need for a separate hydraulic or pneumatic system, reducing vehicle mass and complexity. Once fitted, the system is essentially maintenance-free and there is no potential for leakage of air or hydraulic fluid.
The EGS requires extremely precise control and state-of-the art energy management. Zytek has made use of its long background in control electronics and software and the electromechanical design expertise of its electric vehicles division to engineer a system which can operate reliably in the most demanding race conditions without excessive power consumption. The EGS control unit includes built-in energy storage, which accumulates electrical energy from the vehicle alternator between gearshifts and delivers high power extremely rapidly for a super fast shifting action. All system components together with the control and calibration software have been developed in-house by Zytek.
Zytek's EGS has already demonstrated its reliability after successfully completing a combined 1.8 million shifts in the first season of the A1 Grand Prix series. The lightweight, high performance system has also been used on Zytek's own LMP1 sportscars in 2004, 2005 and 2006 in endurance racing worldwide, as well as the renowned Le Mans 24 hour race.
Following the conclusion of the new deal, Zytek's motorsport products applications manager Phil Lord said, "We are delighted to be working closely with Acura for ALMS next year. Our EGS is well suited to endurance racing, providing downshift protection over long distances to prevent drivers over revving their engines. It can cope well with varied driving styles, providing a more consistent performance for endurance racing."
The new contract with Acura will see Zytek working closely with engine specialists at the Honda Performance Development facility in Santa Clarita, California, to ensure that the EGS interfaces well with their new engine before official testing. All three teams with the Acura engine and Zytek EGS will be racing for the first time at Sebring ALMS in 2007.
Zytek was formed in 1982 to design, develop and manufacture electronic products for motorsport applications. Today, the Zytek Group comprises five highly-focused divisions which together are able to provide a true single-source for both individual motor racing teams and for one-make racing series.