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Technical Paper

On the Impact of the Maximum Available Tire-Road Friction Coefficient Awareness in a Brake-Based Torque Vectoring System

Tire-road interaction is one of the main concerns in the design of control strategies for active/semi-active differentials oriented to improve handling performances of a vehicle. In particular, the knowledge of the friction coefficient at the tire-road interface is crucial for achieving the best performance in any working condition. State observers and estimators have been developed at the purpose, based on the measurements traditionally carried out on board vehicle (steer angle, lateral acceleration, yaw rate, wheels speed). However, until today, the problem of tire-road friction coefficient estimation (and especially of its maximum value) has not completely been solved. Thus, active control systems developed so far rely on a driver manual selection of the road adherence condition (anyway characterized by a rough and imprecise quality) or on a conservative tuning of the control logic in order to ensure vehicle safety among different tire-road friction coefficients.
Technical Paper

Identification of Agricultural Tyres' Handling Characteristics from Full Vehicle Experimental Tests

For passenger cars, individual tyre model parameters, used in vehicle models able to simulate vehicle handling behavior, are traditionally derived from expensive component indoor laboratory tests as a result of an identification procedure minimizing the error with respect to force and slip measurements. Indoor experiments on agricultural tyres are instead more challenging and thus generally not performed due to tyre size and applied forces. However, the knowledge of their handling characteristics is becoming more and more important since in the next few years, all agricultural vehicles are expected to run on ordinary asphalt roads at a speed of 80km/h. The present paper presents a methodology to identify agricultural tyres' handling characteristics based only on the measurements carried out on board vehicle (vehicle sideslip angle, yaw rate, lateral acceleration, speed and steer angle) during standard handling maneuvers (step-steers, J-turns, etc.), instead than during indoor tests.
Technical Paper

In-Tyre Sensors Induced Benefits on Sideslip Angle and Friction Coefficient Estimation

Aim of this study is to analyze the benefits of the measures provided by smart tyres on tyre-road friction coefficient and vehicle sideslip angle estimation. In particular, a smart tyre constituted by 2 tri-axial accelerometers glued on the tyre inner liner is considered which is able to provide the measures of the tyre-road contact forces once per wheel turn. These measures are added to the ones usually present onboard vehicle (steer angle, lateral acceleration and yaw rate) and following included into an Extended Kalman Filter (EKF) based on a single-track vehicle model. Performance of the proposed observer is evaluated on a series of handling maneuvers and its robustness to road bank angle, tyre and vehicle parameters variation is discussed.
Technical Paper

Vehicle Dynamics, Stability and Control

In the last years the number of electronic controllers of vehicle dynamics applied to chassis components has increased dramatically. They use lookup table of the primary order vehicle global parameters as yaw rate, lateral acceleration, steering angle, car velocity, that define the ideal behavior of the vehicle. They are usually based on PID controllers which compare the actual behavior of every measured real vehicle data to the desired behavior, from look up table. The controller attempts to keep the measured quantities the same as the tabled quantities by using ESP, TC (brakes and throttle), CDC (control shocks absorbers), EDIFF(active differential) and 4WS (rear wheels active toe). The performances of these controls are good but not perfect. The improvement can be achieved by replacement of the lookup tables with a fast vehicle model running in parallel to the real vehicle.
Journal Article

Comparison of Torque Vectoring Control Strategies for a IWM Vehicle

In recent years, concerns for environmental pollution and oil price stimulated the demand for vehicles based on technologies alternative to traditional IC engines. Nowadays several carmakers include hybrid vehicles among their offer and first full electric vehicles appear on the market. Among the different layout of the electric power-train, four in-wheel motors appear to be one of the most attractive. Besides increasing the inner room, this architecture offers the interesting opportunity of easily and efficiently distribute the driving/braking torque on the four wheels. This characteristic can be exploited to generate a yaw moment (torque vectoring) able to increase lateral stability and to improve the handling of a vehicle. The present paper presents and compares two different torque vectoring control strategies for an electric vehicle with four in-wheel motors. Performances of the control strategies are evaluated by means of numerical simulations of open and closed loop maneuvers.
Journal Article

Bifurcation Analysis of a Car Model Running on an Even Surface - A Fundamental Study for Addressing Automomous Vehicle Dynamics

The paper deals with the bifurcation analysis of a simple mathematical model describing an automobile running on an even surface. Bifurcation analysis is adopted as the proper procedure for an in-depth understanding of the stability of steady-state motion of cars (either cornering or running straight ahead). The aim of the paper is providing the fundamental information for inspiring further studies on vehicle dynamics with or without a human driver. The considered mechanical model of the car has two degrees of freedom, nonlinear tire characteristics are included. A simple driver model is introduced. Experimental validations of the model are produced. As a first step, bifurcation analysis is performed without driver (fixed control). Ten different combinations of front and rear tire characteristics (featuring understeer or oversteer automobiles) are considered. Steering angle and speed are varied. Many different dynamical behaviors of the model are found.
Journal Article

Brake Based Torque Vectoring for Sport Vehicle Performance Improvement

The most common automotive drivelines transmit the engine torque to the driven axle through a differential. Semi-active versions of this device ([4], [5], [6]) have been recently conceived to improve vehicle handling at limit and under particular conditions; these differentials are based on the structural scheme of the passive one but they try to manipulate the vehicle dynamics by controlling the distribution of the driving torque on the wheels of the same axle thus generating a yaw moment. Unfortunately a semi-active differential is not able to perform a complete yaw control since the torque can only be transferred from the faster wheel to the slower one; on the other hand, active differentials ([11], [12], [13]) allow to generate the most appropriate yaw moment controlling both the amount of transferred torque and its direction.