When Norfolk-based Active Technologies required a better engineered and more robust throttle position sensor for its patented shaft-less throttle bodies, it turned to Penny + Giles for a solution. The shaft-less throttle body is designed to increase the flow of air into naturally-aspirated engines without the need for a turbo or supercharger. A traditional butterfly throttle body consists of a brass disc mounted through a slotted shaft, which is held in place with two screws.

The Active Technologies system removes the shaft, resulting in a 10% increase in air flow and power from the engine, explains the company. This design has helped to eliminate turbulence, which can cause pressure to build-up in the housing and restrict the amount of air flow.

During development, Active Technologies tested numerous throttle position sensors including a non-contact Hall effect sensor, but while the shaft protrusion didn’t offer the ideal solution, it did convince the company that Hall effect was the right way to go. The company discussed the application with Penny + Giles engineers who recommended the TPS280DP throttle position sensor, which uses a factory programmable Hall effect sensor with two outputs that can be programmed individually for angular range, output range and direction. This has a tested life of more than 60 million operations and, when powered with 5Vdc, has an operating temperature range from -40 to +140°C. Designed to work in harsh motorsport environments, the sensor has shock and vibration resistance, and its drive and body are IP69K-rated for protection against the ingress of dust, fluids and pressure cleaning. It is also mechanically interchangeable with many existing potentiometer-based throttle sensors using 32mm mounting centres, and is designed to interface with most common throttle body D type spindles.

According to Paul Spinks, managing director, a standard 2.0 litre, naturally-aspirated, Duratec engine leaves the factory with approximately 150bhp. By replacing the production system with an Active Technologies throttle body system, the output increases by 30% to 190bhp. The company’s own product demonstrator – a Renault Clio Sport – is fitted with four throttle bodies equipped with the TPS280 sensors, which has increased performance of the standard 150bhp engine to 196bhp.

The throttle bodies are currently being rolled out to over forty different engine variants.