Design of a Preview Controller for Articulated Heavy Vehicles
Journal article, 2013
The paper presents a preview controller design for ATS (active trailer steering) systems to improve high-speed stability of AHVs (articulated heavy vehicles). An AHV consists of a towing unit, namely tractor or truck, and one or more towed units which called trailers. Individual units are connected to one another at articulated joints by mechanical couplings. Due to the multi-unit configurations, AHVs exhibit unique unstable motion modes, including jack-knifing, trailer swing and rollover. These unstable motion modes are the leading cause of highway accidents. To prevent these unstable motion modes, the preview controller, namely the LPDP (lateral position deviation preview) controller, is proposed. For a truck/full-trailer combination, the LPDP controller is designed to control the steering of the front and rear axle wheels of the trailing unit. The calculation of the corrective steering angle of the trailer front axle wheels is based on the preview information of the lateral position deviation of the trajectory of the axle center from that of the truck front axle center. Similarly, the steering angle of the trailer rear axle wheels is calculated by using the lateral position deviation of the trajectory of the axle center from that of the truck front axle. To perform closed-loop dynamic simulations and evaluate the vehicle performance measure, a driver model is introduced and it ‘derives’ the AHV model based on well-defined testing specifications. The proposed preview control scheme in the continuous time domain is developed by using the LQR (linear quadratic regular) technique. The closed-loop simulation results indicate that the performance of the AHV with the LPDP controller is improved by decreasing rearward amplification ratio from the baseline value of 1.28 to 0.98 and reducing transient off-tracking by 95.03%. The proposed LPDP control algorithm provides an alternative method for the design optimization of AHVs with ATS systems.
active trailer steering
articulated heavy vehicle
closed-loop dynamic simulation.
Optimal preview control