Design of a pressure modulator using fast-acting bistable valves
Journal article, 2020

Fast-acting pneumatic valves, combined with a slip-control braking algorithm, have recently been used to improve the straight-line braking performance of an experimental heavy goods vehicle, on low friction roads, by 16%. This paper describes how the fast-acting valves, which were central to the aforementioned research, were designed for use on a commercial vehicle. Design equations, as well as a generalized design method, are first presented for the fast-acting bistable pneumatic valve. A pressure observer is developed to predict the brake chamber pressure in cases where a pressure transducer is mounted upstream. A simple fault detection algorithm is then introduced, which utilizes some of the calculations made in the pressure observer, and is shown to correctly identify faults on a real vehicle. Performance comparisons are made between the new modulator and a conventional heavy goods vehicle electro-pneumatic brake system. Closed-loop frequency response tests show that the control bandwidth of brake chamber pressure on a heavy goods vehicle can be increased from 1.5 Hz to 10 Hz using the new hardware.

electronic braking system

antilock braking system

Solenoid valve

heavy vehicle

slip control


brake system design

magnetic modeling


Leon Henderson

Chalmers, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences, Vehicle Engineering and Autonomous Systems

David Cebon

University of Cambridge

Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part C: Journal of Mechanical Engineering Science

0954-4062 (ISSN)

Vol. In Press

Subject Categories

Vehicle Engineering



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