TRW has announced the opening of a new test track in Heihe in the northern region of China. TRW has made a significant investment in the facility since its set-up began in 2006.

TRW says the facility offers comprehensive product development and validation during the winter season - offering a variety of track surfaces which are designed to test active safety systems such as advanced braking and steering systems and integrated vehicle control and driver assist technologies.

Nancy Gougarty, TRW vice president of Asia Pacific Operations, said: "Heihe offers world-class testing conditions and boasts one of the broadest ranges of testing surfaces in the Asia Pacific region. We are proud to be able to support our China domestic and international customers locally with their product development requirements. Having a test track here in China means that we can greatly reduce the time and costs of our winter testing, while developing new and enhanced safety systems for the domestic and global markets."

The facility is situated on approximately 350 acres, comprised of around 320 acres of lake tracks and 30 acres of land tracks. The location includes a dynamic area, a handling track, ice testing circles of 200m and 500m in diameter, and packed ice, polished ice and mue-split surfaces strategically designed for active safety systems development.

"The new test track greatly improves our in-house winter testing capability," explains Jim Luo, general manager of TRW's Asia Pacific technical center. "It will provide our engineers with a local research and data gathering facility and serve as a technical assessment centre where we can work collaboratively to review and discuss vehicle performance directly with our customers."

The track is situated by the Songjitun Reservoir in the Heilongjiang Province of China and is accessible from Heihe airport. With the Heihe test track, TRW now has a network of 12 testing sites worldwide including six winter testing facilities, four warm weather facilities and two all-weather test tracks.