Rheinmetall is pressing ahead with its integration as a technology group. Under the name "ONE Rheinmetall", the company's management is launching a comprehensive strategic program designed to lay the foundations for a new uniform corporate culture and to combine the two divisions of Automotive and Defence into an even more efficient network.
Rheinmetall is launching the "Rheinmetall Academy" as part of its educational training and in-service training program. The aim of the academy is to systematically expand and enhance the management qualities and technical expertise of the management personnel in a central and company-owned training facility.
January: Ben Hudson is appointed to the Executive Board of Rheinmetall Defence, where he represents the Vehicle Systems division.
Rheinmetall AG merges the extensive military vehicle activities of its Defence division into a new Vehicle Systems division. As a prelude, Rheinmetall Landsysteme GmbH (RLS) and Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles GmbH (RMMV) are placed under joint management.
February: Rheinmetall and the Bundeswehr successfully test a high-energy laser effector on a German Navy ship at sea.
April: In a festive ceremony, Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia delivers the first batch of the latest generation of logistic military vehicles to the Australian armed forces in Brisbane.
Rheinmetall receives an order to deliver a new generation of training equipment for shooting exercises to the German Army's Combat Training Centre (GÜZ) in Altmark (Saxony-Anhalt) – one of the world's most advanced military training centres. The latest generation of the Bundeswehr's AGDUS HdWa (training device, duel simulator, small arms) system, a laser-based and radio-based duel simulation system for combat exercises, is based on the Rheinmetall LEGATUS product family and replaces the first generation of the Bundeswehr's existing twenty-year-old systems.
May: Rheinmetall Air Defence wins a major modernisation contract from the Swiss Army and, by 2019, will have retrofitted the fire control units and guns of the Swiss Air Force's 35 mm medium-calibre air defence system ("Oerlikon Skyguard"), which has been in service for many years.
Together with Achleitner, Rheinmetall Landsysteme presents the protected Survivor R passenger transport vehicle, which is intended primarily for equipping police forces.
June: At the ILA Berlin Air Show, Rheinmetall and MBDA present a system concept for short-range and close-range protection against airborne threats for the first time. The solution ensures highly mobile escort and immediate firing readiness and integrates seamlessly into the German tactical air defence system ("Taktisches Luftverteidigungssystem", TLVS) architecture as another possible element of integrated air defence.
With the Remote Controlled Lightweight Missile Mount (RCLM), Rheinmetall's new approach for extremely light missile launch systems celebrates its world première at Eurosatory. Thanks to its weight and size, the RCLM – which is largely made of carbon – can be integrated into almost any military vehicle and can, in particular, fire short-range anti-aircraft or ground-to-ground missiles.
At Eurosatory 2016, Rheinmetall unveils its new Skynex approach for the ground-based, fully networked air defence system of the future and the fully remote-controlled, autonomous and network-compatible Oerlikon Revolver Gun Mk3.
Rheinmetall Landsysteme presents the Lynx infantry fighting vehicle at the Eurosatory defence technology trade fair. The highly protected and agile tracked vehicle contributes to superiority on the battlefield and is suitable for all types of operations – from peace-stabilizing missions to high-intensity combat.
August: As the third NATO state using it, Lithuania procures 88 GTK Boxers with a total value of almost EUR 400 million. The vehicles are to be delivered between 2017 and 2021.
October: In a test campaign lasting several weeks at the Baltic Sea with various test arrangements, numerous LSS drones are successfully neutralised at distances of up to 1.5 kilometres in flight by the high-energy laser effectors applied to the technology demonstrators. This is done, for example, by weakening their structure, cutting through important electrical connections or deliberately destroying the drive units.
Rheinmetall and the US family-owned company Day & Zimmermann (D&Z) set up the joint venture Rheinmetall, Day & Zimmermann Munitions (RDZM) in Rosslyn, Virginia (USA) to design, develop and manufacture the latest generation of ammunition for the US market.
November: On the premises of the German test centre for weapons and ammunition ("Wehrtechnische Dienststelle für Waffen und Munition") in Meppen, the first flight tests are carried out with a targeted, sharp passing shot of weapons with a calibre of up to 20 mm. During the two-week test phase, numerous tests are carried out, including fly-bys at speeds of up to 110 km/h and hovering flights.
At Indo Defence Expo & Forum in Jakarta, Rheinmetall Landsysteme presents a modified Marder 1 vehicle with a 105 mm cannon.
At the I/ITSEC 2016 trade fair in Orlando, for the first time, Rheinmetall Defence Electronics presents the world's first driving simulator combining high-end simulation technology from Rheinmetall with commercially available visualisation software. This demonstrator makes it possible to simulate complex traffic volumes and behaviour in urban areas and to combine them with a highly realistic representation.
At the I/ITSEC 2016 trade fair in Orlando, RDE also presents the versatile LEGATUS modular system.
Also: Considering initial observations on the main armament of future battle tanks, Rheinmetall Defence launches a self-financed demonstrator program in 130 mm calibre to test and analyse the significant improvement in performance it has identified, even in the face of modern threats. A future combat vehicle of the next Leopard 2 generation would thus be able to work against a better protected opponent in duels and at greater distances with superior firepower.
January: Foundation of KSPG (China) Investment Company Ltd. with administrative headquarters in Hongqiao.
May: The "Harmony of the Seas" – the largest cruise ship in the world – departs from St. Nazaire on her maiden voyage to Southampton. 84 large-bore pistons from KSPG AG with a diameter of 46 cm and a weight of 250 kilograms each are at the heart of the six diesel engines from the Finnish manufacturer Wärtsila, which together produce 32,000 kW or approx. 44,000 PS and provide a top speed of 22 knots.
September: KSPG AG is renamed Rheinmetall Automotive AG.
At IAA Nutzfahrzeuge, Pierburg presents a new compressed-air control valve (PRV) for waste gate actuators on turbochargers, among other things. The valve for pneumatic actuators is particularly suitable for utility vehicles with large-volume engines and can also be used to control exhaust flaps and fresh air throttles. It is regulated directly by the current from the motor controller which, however, is significantly lower than that for an electric actuator. The innovation thus contributes to relieving the load on the vehicle's power supply and reduces consumption and emissions.
At IAA Nutzfahrzeuge, Pierburg presents a new high-performance actuator specially designed for heavy-duty applications. The actuator enables the direct drive of flap valves and thus allows a particularly compact design of EGR valves and exhaust gas flaps.
At IAA Nutzfahrzeuge, KS Kolbenschmidt presents a new friction-reduced piston system, achieving a 20-percent improvement in friction coefficients compared to the systems currently in use in the 2016 model year.
October: In Hartha, Pierburg Pump Technology manufactures the 50 millionth water circulation pump.
December: Pierburg concludes an agreement with Zhejiang Yinlun Machinery Co., Ltd., Tiantai/China, to set up a joint venture for the production of modules for cooled exhaust gas recirculation for the Chinese market. Pierburg holds 51% of the shares in the newly founded company Pierburg Yinlun Emission Technology Co., Ltd. based in the Shanghai region.
Also: Pierburg develops a high-flow non-return valve for large engines. This is a new valve that uses tried-and-tested technologies and the new version reduces pressure losses within the EGR system.
Pierburg also develops a flap EGR valve (FlexVent) with integrated sensors for mass flow measurement – especially for engine manufacturers of large-volume engines. It has a particularly high measuring accuracy and reduces fuel consumption through optimised NOx control strategies.
In the field of actuators, Pierburg develops a new application variant from the ETC electric throttle valves – the recirculation valve, which is integrated into the air path of turbocharged engines.
In the field of solenoid valve technology, Pierburg launches the controllable oil hydraulic valve for activating or deactivating piston spray oil cooling in combustion engines subject to high thermal loads. This electrically actuated valve permits active actuation of the piston spray oil cooling system at the optimum operating point, which was previously always passively actuated.
Pierburg also offers a vacuum pump for increasing the braking force in electric cars. This is required because, unlike combustion engines, no vacuum is built up in electric motors.
In the field of electric pumps, a new pump is developed which ensures the extraction of fuel vapours from the tank system and feeds them at excess pressure to the intake system of turbocharged gasoline engines for complete combustion.
Rheinmetall Automotive founds the Neuss-based Selective Laser-Melting product division as the start-up company Solidteq GmbH. The company specialises in 3D printing with metallic materials.
For utility vehicle main bearings running under critical wear conditions, KS Gleitlager offers the two-material bearing KS R53. Extensive test runs prove its outstanding wear resistance in a new utility vehicle engine.
KS Gleitlager offers the electroplated bearing KS S203D for heavy-duty utility vehicle connecting rod bearings mounted on the rod. Completely lead-free, its load-bearing capacity exceeds that of its lead-containing predecessors by more than 20%.
In the "Alternative energy vehicles" business unit, KS Huayu develops lightweight vehicle construction products using aluminium casting technology. For example, electric drives are integrated close to the axle or delicate and cooled housing structures are manufactured for electric traction motors and batteries.
The construction of the new logistics centre in Neuenstadt and its equipment as well as the commissioning of an automated small parts warehouse (also at the Neuenstadt site) are completed.
Following the presentation of the approval by the responsible authorities and the successful closing, the joint venture between KS Kolbenschmidt and the Japanese Riken Corporation officially commences operations. The joint venture Riken Automobile Parts (Wuhan) Co. Ltd. in the Chinese province of Hubei, in which KS Kolbenschmidt holds a 30-percent stake, aims to produce piston rings.
January: Peter Sebastian Krause, Personnel Director at Rheinmetall Automotive AG, succeeds Armin Papperger as Personnel Director and Labour Director on the Executive Board of Rheinmetall AG.
January: Rheinmetall is awarded a major contract to modernise 90 Fuchs armoured transport vehicles of the Bundeswehr by 2020.
February: Rheinmetall and US armaments group Raytheon agree on comprehensive cooperation in the field of defence technology.
March: Rheinmetall receives an order from the US Air Force to supply FAP 25mm x 137 ammunition for the F-35 combat aircraft.
The new roller building for the production of powder without solvents (rolled powder) from Nitrochemie in Aschau is completed.
April: Rheinmetall supplies Swiss prisons Lenzburg and Bostadel with Rapid drone detection systems that can detect overflying drones, balloons or model aircraft but cannot shoot them down. This should enable the prison authorities to prevent weapons, drugs or smartphones from being smuggled into the prisons.
May: The foundation stone for the innovation centre is laid in Unterlüß.
The Bundeswehr orders 104 Leopard 2 A7V battle tanks to be delivered over a period of four years from 2019. This will increase the Leopard 2 fleet to 328 vehicles. Compared to the Leopard 2 A7, the Leopard 2 A7V is characterised by a significantly improved night-time combat capability, additional protective measures and improved air conditioning of the interior in hot theatres of operations.
RMMV and Supashock – an Australian suspension systems specialist – enter into a partnership to develop and manufacture shock absorbers and landing handling systems for military vehicles.
June: Rheinmetall Defence Electronics GmbH is renamed Rheinmetall Electronics.
July: The Bundeswehr orders 2300 HX2 series military trucks worth approximately 900 million Euros to be delivered by 2024.
September: Rheinmetall sets up a joint venture with electronics group Rohde & Schwarz to bid for the major Bundeswehr mobile tactical communication ("Mobile taktische Kommunikation", MoTaKo) and mobile tactical information network ("Mobiler taktischer Informationsverbund", MoTIV). Rheinmetall holds a 74.9 percent stake in the joint venture.
November: In Oldenburg, Rheinmetall hands over the first of a total of 35 TGX 26.360 6X2-2 LL truck driving schools to BwFuhrparkService GmbH (BwFPS).
Rheinmetall MAN High Altitude Truck Expedition sets off with two RMMV HX 6x6 trucks to reach the world's highest accessible point for vehicles. In the Chilean Cordilleras at Ojos del Salado, the expedition team is building the world's highest mountain refuge at an altitude of 6100 metres. Due to an insurmountable rock barrier, the team has to turn around at an altitude of 6150 metres, meaning that the altitude record of 6675 metres set in 2014 will not be reached.
At the I/ITSEC 2017 trade fair in Orlando, for the first time, Rheinmetall presents the Osiris command and staff training system for simulating exercises at operational, tactical and strategic levels in a realistic operational environment. In Orlando, Rheinmetall also presents the Legatus modular live training system for simulating infantry operations.
Also: The new performance-enhanced 120 mm L55 A1 weapon system is qualified. It offers the possibility to give ammunition a higher energy level.
Rheinmetall Defence works on optimising the 120-mm-KE ammunition, which can exploit the higher energy level of the more powerful 120 mm L55 A1 weapon system.
Rheinmetall Soldier Electronics develops the latest version of the ultra-compact laser module series "Vario-Ray LowProfile". This is a very compact laser aiming aid and illumination module. Thanks to its design, it is excellently suited for today's compact assault rifles. The system withstands the harshest conditions on the battlefield and offers the operator operational readiness at all times. American Rheinmetall Systems supports production and sales on the US market.
In 2017, 33 Puma infantry fighting vehicles are delivered to the Bundeswehr.
Saxony's police receive two Survivor R heavy armoured vehicles.
As part of the major Land 121 project, 915 logistics vehicles are delivered to the Australian land forces. This brings the total number of trucks delivered under the 2013 contract to 1028.
Rheinmetall receives a major order for the supply of 68 train systems for the infantryman of the future – extended system ("Infanterist der Zukunft – Erweitertes System") soldier system, which can be fitted to more than 2460 soldiers.
January: The first fully automatic assembly line, working without production personnel, is commissioned at Pierburg's Niederrhein plant for the production of oil valves.
The activities at the Lanciano site are transferred from the Mechatronics division to the Aftermarket division.
At the beginning of the year, KS HUAYU in Neckarsulm started construction work on a new foundry and further halls for subsequent heat treatment, mechanical processing and assembly. KS HUAYU thus expands its capacities for the expansion of die-cast aluminium parts outside the drive train.
Series production of cylinder blocks for high-performance sports car engines is ramped up.
March–April: Rheinmetall Automotive wins two major orders from American automotive manufacturers. In March, a new application of cooling valves, referred to as seat switching valves, for demand-driven cooling and heating of components that will go into series production in 2019, and in April, a new generation of divert-air valves. The start of production for this is 2018.
May: Series production of the EVP 40 electric vacuum pump for a North American subsidiary of a German automotive manufacturer begins in Hartha. It works according to demand, is robust and durable and fulfils a cumulative operating time of up to 1500 operating hours. Series production of vacuum pumps is started for the first time in Hartha.
With the start of series production of EOP in Hartha, the site starts the production of electric oil pumps for the first time.
KS HUAYU AluTech receives a major order from a globally active German automotive manufacturer to produce housings for electric motors in passenger cars. Production will start in 2018 at KPSNC in Shanghai.
KS Kolbenschmidt concludes a license agreement with Chinese automotive supplier ZYNP Corp., Mengzhou, under which ZYNP will produce and distribute steel pistons under the brand name KS Kolbenschmidt in China. Kolbenschmidt builds completely new production facilities for steel pistons in Mengzhou, which ZYNP acquires.
July: Dr. Peter Merten resigns as CFO of Rheinmetall Automotive AG and goes into retirement. His successor is Olaf Hedden, CEO of Pierburg GmbH and Pierburg Pump Technology GmbH.
September: At IAA, Pierburg presents a new type of wastegate actuator for improved boost pressure control.
Pierburg also presents a new inline valve at IAA. It enables optimum installation space conditions and is part of a modular system in the area of cooling and heat flow control.
Pierburg presents a new low-pressure exhaust gas recirculation valve for both diesel and petrol engines. This makes it possible to achieve minimum installation space requirements by means of an indirect DC motor drive.
At IAA, Pierburg presents a new generation of electromotive throttle valves specially designed for use in Euro 6 vehicles. Its housing is made of plastic instead of the conventional aluminium alloy.
Pierburg supplies the Dutch bus manufacturer VDL Bus & Coach with its newly developed heating/cooling module for electric vehicles for the first time. It makes it possible for the passenger compartment to be both heated and cooled and for the temperature in the battery system of electrically powered vehicles to be controlled. The system will be used for the first time in 2018 in the VDL MidCity Electric minibus.
KS Gleitlager presents the extremely smooth-running and wear-resistant Permaglide KS P150 and KS P209, which meet the special requirements of vehicle interiors – including the adjustment of vehicle seats. Thanks to the virtually silent drive train in electric or hybrid vehicles, the new Permaglides counteract the growing noise sensation in the interior of vehicles.
At IAA, KS Gleitlager presents a new generation of polymer bearings that meet the increased requirements for wear resistance and robustness of main and connecting rod bearings in both combustion and hybrid engines.
November: For the first time, Rheinmetall Automotive receives a major order from Southeast Asia. From the end of 2018, divert-air valves with a volume of approx. 7.7 million Euros will be delivered to a major automotive manufacturer.
KS HUAYU's new production hall in Neckarsulm for the manufacture of battery pans, shock absorber mounts and strut domes for Audi and Daimler goes into operation.
December: In St. Leon-Rot, KS Gleitlager sets up a competence centre for small quantities in the industrial sector for targeted customer service.
Also: Pierburg develops a new coolant valve for cooling and heating components as required.
Pierburg develops a compact pump (vapour pump) that flushes out the activated carbon tank to collect fuel vapours without the previously required vacuum in the intake manifold.
KS HUAYU AluTech receives a major order from a premium German manufacturer to produce components for battery boxes made of die-cast aluminium.
Rheinmetall Automotive develops an innovative modular battery pack and a 90 kW electric drive. The protective fibre composite structure was developed by Rheinmetall Defence's Defence Systems division. The new products are presented for the first time at IAA.
Rheinmetall Automotive develops a 90 kw traction motor as a synchronous motor equipped with permanent magnets.
Rheinmetall Automotive and its employees found the start-up company Amprio GmbH. Based on its experience with electric motors and electric vehicles, Amprio develops a new type of pedelec drive with new developments in transmission and electronics. Amprio presents the first prototype of an electric bicycle drive at the Eurobike trade fair in Friedrichshafen beginning on 30 August.
The development of the latest generation of pistons especially for petrol engines, LiteKS-4, is now ready for series production. With the same engine load, the new piston concept achieves a piston weight reduced by about 10 percent and improved friction performance.
KSSP builds a new production facility for passenger car pistons in the metropolis of Chongquing in southwest China. In its first year, the plant has 230 employees and a production capacity of five million pistons.