Located in Whitstable in the South East of the UK, the innovative iQ Research Centre of Excellence is a world class research and design facility.It was established to explore new technologies, to drive product innovation and to enhance Q’Straint’s product development capabilities at the same time increasing the speed with which new products can be brought to market.
Q’Straint’s iQ Research Centre of Excellence houses the HYGE™ dynamic crash simulation system. It was opened in February 2014 and utilises the most advanced data gathering technologies available, including the very latest full colour, high speed / HD cameras, on board Luminys Sunblast LED lighting and Humanetics crash test dummies. Currently a very limited number of HYGE™ dynamic crash simulation systems exist in the world, only fourof which are in the United Kingdom.
On the 11th September 2015, Q’Straint further expanded its iQ Research Centre with a second facility housing the world’s first Servo-Electric Full Vehicle Seat Belt Anchorage Test System developed in partnership with VTI/Additium.
The new iQ SBA Test Facility typically delivers a static pull force in excess of 6 tonnes –a vital test of product safety. It includes a fully equipped vehicle preparation area and flexible fixturing system capable of accommodating test vehicles of up to 7.5 metres in length.
The SBA system itself has unique features such as electric linear actuators and super light synthetic chain made of high resistance fibres. Both technologies are unique to this facility.
The electric actuators allow clean, silent, precise and highly controllable test configurations to be programmed with touchscreen simplicity.
The system also includes a large samples support frame which makes it possible to test larger vehicles and several passenger seat rows at the same time.The real time controller also has specific ECE R14 advanced control strategies programmed for improved accurate control.
The research and product development that this new facility enables present the opportunity for new technologies to be developed and applied, delivering the next generation of wheelchair accessible vehicle solutions for minibus, community transport and public transport vehicles.
Examples of the new technologies being developed as a result of work at theiQ Research Centre can be seen in the QRT-350 and 550-E retractors designed to secure heavy wheelchairs of up to 200kg and also the Quantum, the transport industry’s first fully automatic rear-facing wheelchair securement station.
The most recent development is the OMNI VR (Vehicle Reinforcement)All OMNI VR kits are tested and certified at the iQ Research Centre of Excellence and consist of specifically engineered vehicle strengthening kits designed to maximise the number of wheelchair positions available for community transport. They are certified in a range of M1 & M2 vehicle models and permit operators to maximise seating flexibility while staying mindful of various requirements for wheelchair space.
All kits feature world-class Q’Straint or Sure-Lok retractors and OMNI anchorage options. The anchorage systems have been designed to enable quick installation with the majority being self-jigging.
OMNI VR anchorages and WTORS systems comply with the following: ECE R14, R16 andISO 10542-1 and are compatible for use with IVA, NSS or ECWVTA. Currently the OMNI VR kits are available for the following M1 vehicle models: Sprinter, Crafter, Boxer, Ducato, Jumper, Relay, Master, Movano, NV400& Transit- with more to follow soon!
For nearly 30 years, Q'Straint has remained focused on one mission: To develop the most innovative solutions that advance the safety and effectiveness of wheelchair passenger travel. Our reputation as a global leader is the result of making transportation safety and customer needs the highest priority. We are committed to continued product leadership and innovation; we have the most exhaustive and comprehensive research and testing programs and for more than two decades we have played a key role in developing regional and international safety standards. Today, our diverse global staff serves customers in more than 70 countries throughout North and South America, Europe, Australasia, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. For more information visit QStraint.com. Become a Q’Straint friend on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/QStraint and follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/qstraint.