LINK Supplier Showcase at FCA

LINK Tricycle

Invited by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) in Auburn Hills, Michigan, Link Engineering Company hosted a one day supplier showcase on March 8th, 2017. Excited for the opportunity to meet with new and existing customers, we developed an interactive display designed to demonstrate the capabilities of our portable data acquisition system. Our system, the Model 4000 (V-Max) is ideally suited for precise test applications with the combination of high sampling rates, reliability and modularity. The V-Max has 11 different modules from which to choose from, which can be easily added or removed based on your specific testing needs.

To demonstrate the V-max, we set up an indoor slalom course right in the middle of FCA’s Tech Plaza and participants were challenged to test their skills on the course. The demonstration showcased a modified, instrumented, adult tricycle built to ride like a children’s big wheel. To accomplish the effects of the big wheel and to increase the fun-factor, we removed the conventional rear wheels and replaced them with caster wheels. The wheels were further modified with an adjustable leaf spring that limits the amount of caster the wheels can articulate. In practice, the trike drifted nicely around the slalom course and around 30 adventurous participants raced to be the fastest through the course.

The tricycle was equipped with 8 different sensors to record the data of each participant’s unique performance on the slalom course. The vehicle was equipped with the following sensors: lateral and longitudinal acceleration, handlebar steer angle, strain gauges on the handle bars to measure the rider’s steering efforts, strain gauges on the pedal forks to measure the pedal and brake efforts, strain gauges on the rear axle to measure the rider’s side-to-side weight distribution, yaw rate, battery voltage, and lap course trigger.

The demonstration showed how versatile our data acquisition system is, and how it can easily be incorporated into a lab setting or instrumented on a vehicle for testing. We are very grateful to have the opportunity to visit our customer’s site, to speak with new and familiar faces, and to demonstrate the value that LINK can bring to its customers.