Continental focuses on faster braking with electrohydraulic system

  • 14-Mar-2012 01:43 EDT

Continental's new MK C1 electrohydraulic brake can be used as a regenerative braking system without any additional measures.

Continental designed its new MK C1 brake with the individual components for brake actuation, booster and control systems (ABS, ESC) combined into a compact, weight-saving unit.

According to the company, this electrohydraulic brake builds up braking pressure faster than conventional hydraulic systems. “This new brake design actuates generally three times faster than standard brakes,” said Christian Schumacher, Director Engineering Systems & Technology, NAFTA, in an interview with AEI.

New advanced driver-assistance systems need brakes that activate faster. As Schumacher explained, faster braking means more time for control systems to process sensor data and discriminate actual emergency events. In effect, they reduce the potential of false alarms while increasing accuracy.

Schumacher also told AEI that the brakes weigh 40% less than regular brakes.

Continental reports performing test trials over a two-year development process. A test vehicle fitted with the new MK C1 showed a significantly shorter braking distance during electronically initiated emergency braking than a conventional-equipped vehicle.

The MK C1 brake system can also be used as a regenerative braking system without any additional measures, according to the company.

How is it built? The company describes the new architecture as an electric motor that drives a cylinder piston in a linear way. This approach combines the functioning of the brake booster during driver braking with the active pressure modulation of a slip control system. When pressure is actively being built-up, as within a normal braking process, only the brake fluid already in the cylinder needs to be pressurized. This builds braking pressure faster.

The MK C1 features a hydraulic fallback solution, allowing the driver to bring the vehicle to a stop with moderate pedal force even in the event of a complete system failure, according to Continental.

Other advantages the company notes are increased energy efficiency and quieter operation, which may grow in importance in quiet electric vehicles and hybrids operating in electric mode.

The start of production (SOP) is planned for 2015.

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