Light-weight Aluminum Composite Fade Response and Speed Sensitivity Results 2011-01-2146
Rising fuel costs, shorter stopping distance requirements, and the growth in hybrid vehicles all lead to an increased demand in lightweight vehicle components. Changing market needs generate innovative products. One innovative product is a lightweight aluminum metal matrix composite (MMC) brake drum that is substantially lighter than the traditional cast iron product. The objective of this paper is to present the lightweight brake drum using both analytical and dynamometer data to demonstrate the effectiveness during speed sensitivity testing. Thermal analysis tools were developed to predict brake temperatures. These predictions utilize system parameters and braking event characteristics to create realistic predictions of temperature, which have been validated with dynamometer testing. This paper will also present dynamometer data that shows the effectiveness of braking events at varying brake speeds and system pressures. Ultimately it was shown that light weight aluminum composite brake drum reached lower maximum temperatures than the standard cast iron brake drum, during the same braking events. Lightweight aluminum composite brake drums provide a new solution to the trucking industry, and an alternative to larger, wider drums to comply with increased regulations.