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Bosch integrates yaw-rate and acceleration sensors in the ESP® control unit - (Global)

June 10th, 2008

  • Additional integrated acceleration sensor enables longitudinal acceleration measurement
  • Flexible orientation of the hydraulic modulator around the vertical axis
  • Simpler assembly and minimized space requirements

In May 2008, Bosch started production of a new version of the ESP® brake control system which integrates sensors for yaw-rate measurement and lateral acceleration in the electronic control unit. This integration is a world first. In the past, these sensors were installed separately in the interior of the vehicle, within a common housing and connected via the wiring harness to the ESP® electronic control unit. "Integration significantly reduces both the space requirement in the vehicle and assembly work of car makers for the complete ESP® system," explains Klaus Meder, Executive Vice President of the Bosch Chassis Systems Control division. "This means we have made a significant step toward achieving the objective of installing ESP® in all cars." The first series application of the new technology will be in the new SEAT Ibiza.

The electronic control unit for the ESP® has been located in the engine compartment for several years now, it is connected directly to the brake control system's hydraulic modulator. In order to integrate the sensors in the control unit, engineers had to overcome several technical challenges. For example, they had to adapt the sensors to cope with considerably higher ambient temperatures. They also had to control the vibrations that occur when the brake control system intervenes from distorting the sensor output signals. The result was a vibration-reduced and balance-optimized, three-point installation of the hydraulic unit. This installation also ensures that driving on very poor roads will have no influence at all on the ESP® function.

Another challenge was the orientation of the lateral-acceleration sensor. The sensor module, to date installed separately in the interior, must be placed precisely at right angles to the direction of travel. Due to the restricted space available, such a requirement for the installation of the unit in the engine compartment makes installation difficult. Therefore, Bosch engineers have integrated two acceleration sensors in the sensor element which measure precisely at right angles to each other. As a result, the hydraulic modulator, which must still be installed horizontally, can be positioned around its vertical axis as desired. The vehicle's lateral acceleration so can be calculated precisely, based on the known installation location and the signals from both acceleration sensors. And not only that: the sensor information now also enables measurement of the vehicle's longitudinal acceleration. For example, this value can be used for hill starts, known as "Hill Hold Control." and when employed in vehicles with automatic transmissions, losses can be reduced in the torque converter, thus saving fuel.

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