Dunlop unveils new monitoring system
For the 2017 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship season Dunlop is launching more than a new tyre range. The company’s innovative RFID Technology (Radio Frequency Identification), launched in BTCC at the beginning of the decade, has been replaced by an all new system. The new Dunlop RFID Technology promises more speed, greater precision and increased versatility.
The key element of the RFID technology is a tiny, 1cm chip. The microchip is built into the tyre in Dunlop’s Motorsport manufacturing facility and is programmed with a unique code that identifies the tyre, enabling automatic reading to see the type and size of the tyre as well as its unique identity number.
After several trials between 2008 and 2010, Dunlop successfully pioneered a world first in motor sport tyre technology in 2011 with all tyres on BTCC cars being automatically scanned as the cars drive into the pit lane. This ensures that each car is using the correct and allocated tyres at all times. This made scrutineering more efficient and helped speed up the turnaround times for teams on a very busy BTCC raceday, where there are sometimes just two hours between championship races.
New system – Faster and more versatile
Six years later, Dunlop has decided to take the next step forward with RFID Technology. Rather than just monitoring which tyres are used on which car, the new system can provide reports on Mileage per tyre and tyre use history. The system also has a faster read rate of the tyres as the cars pass through the RFID readers at the pitlane entrance.
In addition to the chips in the tyres, the size of the RFID tags has been reduced, allowing them to be placed on the rear windows instead of being fixed to the more vulnerable doors.
Michael Butler, Manager, UK and One Brand Motorsport Events stated “The Dunlop RFID technology has been a huge benefit in ensuring an accurate log of each tyre’s activity. The new system is a step forward, being faster, more efficient and higher performing than its predecessor – just like the upgrade we have made to our BTCC tyres!”
Dunlop’s future goal is to increase tyres’ intelligence to the point that tyres are feeding back vital real-time information to the teams and drivers.