Rieter approached the problem of noise reduction differently than other companies have. Its achievement in acoustics integration is based on principles of absorption rather than insulation. Rieter’s patented, two-layer noise reduction material, Rieter Ultra Light (RUL), absorbs sound efficiently enough to reduce the weight of automotive acoustic treatments by as much as 50%, or between 10 and 30 kg per vehicle (22-66 lbs.). Rieter’s acoustic engineers analyze the sources and locations of vehicle noise and apply strategically placed RUL in assembly-ready panels to achieve the same or better acoustics and noise attenuation with less weight and cost.
Among the highest volume platforms using or committed to RUL and Rieter’s acoustic integration services are the Chrysler Minivan and the new Fiat Punto, as well as several other platforms under development now in North America and Europe. By 2003, over three million vehicles will use RUL and Rieter’s acoustics integration services. Consumers driving these vehicles 10,000 miles per year (16,000 km) will each use at least 115 fewer gallons of fuel per year (440 liters), and the environment will escape the consequences of almost 350 million gallons (1.3 billion liters) of fuel consumed.
Rieter’s innovation was based on an excellent understanding of the customers’ needs, a thorough and creative understanding of the science of acoustics, and sound business judgment. The innovation changes the Winterthur, Switzerland-based company’s former business -- a supplier of bulk textile materials and processing equipment to the textile industry -- to supplying technical services and highly engineered materials to the automotive industry. This innovation is positive for consumers, the industry, the company, and the environment.