Bosch has engineered motorcycle stability control (MSC), the maiden brake control system for motorcycles for offering the best possible stability in all riding circumstances. It aids the biker during both braking and accelerating, and while riding straight as well as while cornering. The motorcycle’s negation besides all the pleasures of riding are not compromised. The mechanism will hit the market at the end of 2013 with the KTM 1190 Adventure and 1190 Adventure R 2014 models.
“Almost one in two fatal motorcycle accidents occurs in a bend,” mentioned Gerhard Steiger, President of the Bosch Chassis Systems Control division. “The Bosch MSC motorcycle stability control can help further reduce the number of accidents.” In 2010, over 5,000 motorcyclists met their death in fatal road mishaps in Europe alone. Studies have revealed that ABS on its own can put a brake to approx. one-quarter of all festal motorcycle accidents involved with death. The new stability control will enhance this safety number significantly.
Enhanced Safety – in Bends
"The technical basis of the MSC is the ABS enhanced system for motorcycles,” says Fevzi Yildirim, head of the Bosch centre of competence for powered two-wheeler safety in Japan. “The new functions are made possible by an extensive array of sensors and sophisticated software.” This system provides motorcycle manufacturers and their demanding customers with a wide range of safety functions:
- The lean and pitch angle-dependent ABS system adds value to riding stability across all riding situations as well as braking efficiency.
- The traction control controls the optimum engine torque so that even on variable or slippery road surfaces, the driving force is competently moved to the road and the drive wheel does not lose its grip.
- When heavy braking is applied in curves, the MSC cuts the motorcycle’s propensity to return to an upright position. This involuntary righting of the machine ensures a larger cornering radius, which often leads in the motorcycle leaving its lane. In such conditions, the eCBS electronic joint brake system makes the best possible distribution of brake force between the wheels, and thus stabilises the bike during cornering.
- The MSC also reduces the risk of ‘lowsiders’. These are accidents in which the motorcycle capsizes during cornering and the wheels slide out toward the outside of the bend. They occur when too much brake force is applied during cornering and the wheels are not able to transfer sufficient side force onto the road. MSC counteracts this by detecting the risk of a lowsider and limiting the maximum brake force. The eCBS function distributes this maximum available brake force between the wheels, ensuring the best possible brake performance under cornering conditions.
- The eCBS mechanism guarantees maximum optimum supply of brake force at all times – even when the biker erroneously uses only one of the two brakes, or applies excessive force on the brakes.
- The wheelie-mitigation regulates the engine torque, stopping the front wheel from lifting uncontrollably and at the same time guaranteeing maximum acceleration.
- The rear-wheel lift-up mitigation function holds the rear wheel on the road by dropping the maximum brake force on the front wheel when riding on surfaces with high friction coefficients. Riding stability is maintained, taking pitch rate and longitudinal acceleration into account.
Electronic systems pick out the restrictions of driving dynamics
The motorcycle stability system utilises wide variety of sensors to record the driving dynamics of the machine. Wheel sensors calculate the rotational speed of the front and rear wheels, and an inertia sensor module keeps a tab on the vehicle’s lean and pitch angles more than 100 times per second. By examining the sensor data, the difference in speed between front and rear wheels, as well as other motorcycle-specific parameters such as tyre size, tyre shape, and sensor location, the ABS control unit computes the physical limits of brake force on the basis of lean angle.
In case the motorcycle stability control identifies that a wheel is has started to lock, the ABS control unit puts into use the pressure modulator in the hydraulic brake circuit. This lessens the brake pressure and shapes it up again within a fraction of a second, resulting in adequate amount of brake pressure is applied as per requirement to safeguard each wheel from locking.
For motorcyclists, the Bosch MSC can turn out to be a life-saving apparatus. However, just like ABS, it cannot flout the laws of physics. Great extent of misjudgement of the riding situation and great mistakes on the part of the biker can still invite accident. Nonetheless, the system safeguards bikers in borderline situations, enabling them get the maximum harvest out of their motorcycles, while keeping them much safer at the same time.
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