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LORD Magneto-Rheological (MR)

Seat Suspension

Truck drivers and heavy machinery operators spend a lot of their time in harsh and unpleasant vibration environments. Ride quality not only is a safety issue for the operator, but also passengers and bystanders. The vertical movement of the seat as it travels from bottom to top end-stops while driving over rough terrain can cause the operator to lose control. If you hit the bottom end-stop, your back hurts. If you hit the top end-stop, you might hit the headliner or your feet and hands could come off the controls.

One proven solution is the integration of our MR technology as a component in the suspension system, such as the Motion Master™ Ride Management System which we designed specifically for a Class 8 truck and off-highway machinery seating application. Due to their rough rides, these vehicles typically have suspended seats with an air spring and passive shock absorber. Suspension topping and bottoming is a big problem with truck drivers and stopping the seat motion in a controlled fashion and maintaining a good ride is a tough challenge. However, the challenge of engineering the semi-active vibration systems into real-world applications is to provide solutions that are practical and affordable.

To meet this challenge, we engaged in a concentrated effort on control development, damper design and subjective ride evaluation. The system uses a shock absorber containing our MR fluid. Since product warranties in the trucking industry can be as high as seven years or one million road miles, the rod-seal combination is built to withstand heavy usage. We also designed a completely new rod and sealing package to contain LORD MR fluid during the shock absorber's life-span. Today, after logging billions of road miles during the last decade, our MR-enabled smart systems are a commercially proven seat-suspension technology. Motion Master-equipped seating is available from Bostrom Seating for class 8 truck applications and Sears Seating for agriculture and off-highway applications.

Adaptable Real-Time Damping:
The LORD Motion Master™ system is the only solution that automatically adapts to both the driver’s body weight and changing levels of shock and road vibration.

Safer Work Environment:
The LORD Motion Master™ system contributes to improved driver responsiveness and control while reducing fatigue and risk of injury. These benefits can translate to a reduction in absenteeism, turnover and health-care costs.

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