Serck system gives BMW a cleaner exhaust rating

Birmingham-based Serck Heat Transfer has supplied the exhaust gas cooling system used on the diesel-engined version of the 3 Series BMW saloon to achieve cleaner exhaust gas emission.

The 320d is powered by a 2-litre, four-cylinder direct injection turbo-charged engine developing 100kW. BMW quotes acceleration of 0 100 kph in 9.9 seconds, a top speed of 207kph, with average fuel consumption of 5.7 litres for 100km.

The 1,951cc engine is environment friendly, meeting the requirements of the Euro 3 emission control standard which comes into force in 2000.

The engine’s performance is boosted by high pressure direct injection, up to 1,700 bar in the jets, a variable geometry turbocharger, four valves per cylinder, intercooling and an oxidation catalyser.

Serck’s exhaust gas cooler plays a big part in the performance and cleanliness of the engine. Hot gas from the exhaust manifold passes into the Serck device via a valve and is cooled, so reducing its volume and increasing its density, before it is returned to the engine through the inlet manifold. This allows a greater mass of exhaust to be recirculated while suppressing the combustion temperature, thereby reducing NOx and particulate emissions.


Welsh Subcontract machinist Mollart Automotive is looking for customers to take up excess capacity on two Star sliding headstock machines used for turning bar up to 32mm in diameter.

The machines, equipped with front and rear-end working tooling, are employed 12-hours a day seven days a week at Mollart’s premises in Resolven, South Glamorgan. They are used for end facing and taper turning the outside diameter on steering rack bars for TRW Steering Systems next door.

Tolerances are to within +/-0.06mm on the OD, for example, while hole depths must be held to +/-0.07mm. By March, Mollart expects to ramp up production to 16,000 rack bars a week, which is half TRW’s requirement.

Mollart uses its own two-spindle and four-spindle CNC machines to drill the steel rack bars, which are made from EN8, EN8C or EN19C rolled steel bar. TRW carries out subsequent end threading and air hole drilling. Mollart expects to take over this aspect too.

Plant manager Vaughan Griffiths says the Star machines, supplied by A&S Precision Machine Tools, are ideally suited to larger bar diameter work.

Simultaneous reverse end facing and feeding of the subsequent bar mean production is uninterrupted and unit manufacturing costs are kept as low as possible.


Harness Software has launched version 2.0 of its design-to-manufacture program Capital H, which gives users an integrated approach said to cut costs by up to 84% over traditional development methods.

Wiring harnesses, which are complex to design because of the large number of terminations, are getting more complex in line with demand for mass customised products with many options. This is pushing up development and test costs.

Capital H uses a single database to manage all the information of a wiring harness project from conceptual design through project tendering to detailed engineering, purchasing and manufacture.

In-built intelligent validation routines identify design discrepancies at an early stage. Design changes automatically recalculate wire lengths and produce a ‘materials difference’ list.

Labour and materials costing reports can be used to compare cost differences between different production sites.


In an attempt to sharpen its market focus, electronics giant Hewlett-Packard has set up an automotive solutions division.

It will continue the work previously handled by HP’s integrated systems division but will now concentrate exclusively on services for the automotive industry and its suppliers.

These include software tools for electronic design, manufacture and test, as well as ancillary items such as lighting components, CAD workstations and software for supply chain management and online purchasing.


Coventry-based automotive wheel bearings supplier Nadella UK makes special bearings designed to be lightweight, compact and with fewer components.

These are said to improve performance and reliability and reduce costs.


Lighting and motor loads are typical applications for the updated JSM relay from Matsushita.

The relay is available in 10A or 15A 14VDC capacities, both compact, sealed to IP67 and able to cope with high inrush currents up to 50A.