Auto Service World
News   April 10, 2002   by Auto Service World

Delphi Honors Inventors with Award Named After King of Automotive Inventors

Delphi today named 20 of its top inventors as “Boss” Kettering Award winners, one of the company’s most prestigious engineering achievements
The annual awards are named for Charles “Boss” Kettering, the first vice president of the GM Research Laboratories. Kettering was a prolific inventor, with more than 140 patents registered in his name. “The ‘Boss’ Kettering Awards are a long-standing part of Delphi’s ongoing heritage, dating back more than 25 years,” said Dr. Andrew Brown, Jr., Delphi’s director of engineering. This is the third year Delphi is running the program independent of the GM-Delphi “Boss” Kettering Awards program.
“These 20 men and women are true innovators that are securing Delphi’s future as a technology leader,” said Brown. Each inventor not only receives the “Boss” Kettering Award but also will be inducted into Delphi’s Innovation Hall of Fame, Delphi’s highest engineering honor. To date, Delphi’s prestigious Innovation Hall of Fame has inducted nearly 400 members. Less than one percent of Delphi’s scientists, engineers and technicians are eligible and considered for admission each year. This year’s award winners are:
–Recognition Passive Occupant Detection System inventors Hamid Borzabadi, Robert Cashler, Gregory Cobb, Robert Constable, Duane Fortune, Morgan Murphy, Robert Myers, Robert Perisho, William Piper, Pamela Roe, Karl Stone, Stuart Sullivan and Mark Vincen. The passive occupant detection system is a seat-based sensor that provides information to the airbag computer to determine whether to suppress or allow vehicle passenger airbag deployment based on the passenger’s weight classification. It is the first validated technology designed to help automakers meet new federal standards designed to minimize airbag injuries. Delphi was the first company to have this innovative vehicle passenger weight measurement technology market-ready in a commercial application, and also the first to fully develop a truly passive system, not dependent on driver interaction. In addition, the system is universally adaptable to most seat types without affecting seat crashworthiness or comfort.
–Magnasteer inventors Joel Birsching, David Graber, Andrzej Pawlak, Thomas Perry and Michael Richardson. Magnasteer provides a variable torsional rate in the steering gear through the operation of a magnetic machine, which has been integrated into the steering gear. A coil within the magnetic machine regulates the torsional rate of the device. During parking maneuvers, steering effort is reduced by subtracting torsional rate from the valve. As vehicle speed increases, the torsional rate increases to provide improved highway feel and stability. The system offers a high degree of vehicle tunability–providing a wide range of effort between parking and highway operation.
–Water Shedding Evaporator for Automotive Air Conditioning System inventors Dr. Mohinder Bhatti, Shrikant Joshi and Gary Vreeland. The evaporator is an essential part of the automotive air conditioning system. During the process of dehumidification, water vapor is removed from the air and deposited in the form of a liquid film on the external cold surface of the evaporator. One of the problems associated with the water deposition on the evaporator surface is the generation of a stale and musty odor under certain conditions, which is caused by microbial growth in a humid environment. In addition, the excess water retained in the evaporator core can get entrained in the air stream in the form of fine mist-like droplets. Delphi’s water shedding evaporator can curb the malodor producing microbial growth by minimizing water retention in the evaporator. Previously, mitigating the water droplet entrainment in the air stream entering the passenger compartment meant the addition of a stainless steel or foam screen on the downstream face of the evaporator. The water shedding evaporator has now made it possible to remove those screens.

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