Electric Power Steering - The First Step on the Way to “Steer by Wire” 1999-01-0401
The automotive industry is facing a revolution in steering technology. For many years powersteering technology was focussed on hydraulic systems. These systems have achieved a remarkable performance in regard to ride and handling, cost and comfort. At the moment the situation is changing dramatically. A lot of car manufacturers mainly in Europe and Asia are switching to electric power steering because of several advantages e.g. concerning fuel consumption and logistics. This paper will discuss the demands for EPS systems of the second generation. A technical approach is described, as well as measurements showing several benefits in regard to vehicle dynamics. The general introduction of EPS systems also has restarted the discussion about „Steer by Wire”. This technology confronts the industry with even higher challenges. The additional requirements - mainly for maintaining safety - are highlighted and the chances and risks are discussed. In summary: EPS systems are competitive right now. Based on this technology the future of „Steer by Wire” may come soon.