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Johnson Controls Unveils Industry-Leading Crash Test Facility Allowing for Standardized Safety Testing of Automotive Seats Globally


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PLYMOUTH, MI -- Aug. 12, 2014: Johnson Controls' new state-of-the-art crash test facility is now open at its Automotive Seating headquarters in Plymouth, Mich.

The 6,000-square-foot facility houses a Seattle Safety ServoSled that allows the automotive supplier to offer the most accurate, standardized safety testing of seats globally through collaboration with its other testing facilities located in Burscheid, Germany; Changchun and Shanghai, China; and Yokohama, Japan.

"The investment in this new North American crash test facility reinforces our commitment to innovation and technology as well as the safety of our products," said Jeff Williams, group vice president and general manager of Johnson Controls Automotive Seating's global Complete Seat and Supply Chain group.

"There are only 44 ServoSleds worldwide and only 10 in the United States. Johnson Controls has one of the largest sled testing networks globally," according to Williams.

The new lab addresses increasingly stringent and precise governmental seat safety specifications as well as its customers' expectations for a testing environment that meets evolving industry standards.

As vehicle production is globalized, Johnson Controls is positioned to consistently deliver global engineering, product development and validation to meet those needs. Global collaboration on validation methods and equipment ensures that similar results are achieved regardless of the testing location.

The new sled is a closed-loop system that allows Johnson Controls to monitor in real-time what is happening to the seat or seat component as a test is being run.

Test results from the new equipment are extremely accurate, repeatable and predictable. Such high-precision tests enable engineers to gain insight into the stability and dynamic behavior of seat structures, evaluate the effectiveness of head restraints in preventing whiplash, and find potential areas for improvement.