FAG has long been renowned for quality and reliability, but did you know that there is a lot more going on inside the modern wheel bearing than just balls or rollers!
Many FAG wheel bearings now incorporate magnetic encoding technology that provides essential data to various vehicle safety systems, helping drivers keep control of their vehicle in hazardous conditions.
Technical Services Manager Malcolm Short said: “Many of the modern safety features that we take for granted rely on data fed from the wheel bearing encoder, using technology which is developed in partnership with the VMs.
“This is just the latest example of how Schaeffler engineers are working hand in hand with vehicle manufacturers to make vehicles safer on our increasingly busy roads.”
The encoders found in modern FAG wheel bearings provide data for all of these safety critical systems:
ABS – (Anti Lock Braking System) – prevents wheel lock up by continuously comparing wheel speed data. If wheels lock up brake pressure is released electronically allowing the wheels to rotate and vehicle control restored during harsh braking.
Torque Vectoring (YAW Control) – in modern day automotive application differentials torque vectoring is employed to vary the power that is applied to each wheel by monitoring rotational speeds and steering angles from the wheels.
Stability Management Systems Including Traction Control and Electronic differential locking – (ESP, DSC, TRC, ASR) – work continuously whilst driving taking data from speed sensors to control systems such as Electronic Brake Distribution to aid vehicle control in the event of loss of traction when cornering and steering angle sensors that relays the steering wheel angle and direction of the vehicle.
Speedo/Cruise control – modern vehicles now have electronic speedometer that are operated from the signal generated by the magnetic pulse from the encoder built into the seal on the wheel bearing. Cruise control will use the data to electronically maintain vehicle speed, with the same technology used in vehicles fitted with speed limiters.
Distance Control/Automatic Braking/Park Assist – in conjunction with front and rear sensors, or a front mounted camera, speed can be either reduced or increased by applying the brake or throttle to maintain the distance between the driven vehicle and the vehicle in front. Park assist also uses speed data from the wheel bearing along with the steering sensor and front and rear parking sensors on the vehicle.
Hill Start – the magnetic poles in the wheel bearing work from 0mph. Hill start is monitored from this data and the brakes are electronically applied until the accelerator is depressed.
Hill Descent – some modern day all wheel drive vehicles are now fitted with a ‘hill descent’ option, which controls the speed of each wheel whilst applying even brake pressure to maintain safe control of the vehicle.
SATNAV/GPS – accurate wheel speed data supplied to these systems allows information to the driver to be relayed such as, arrival times, current speed etc even when working at low speed or during a loss of the GPS signal.
So, not only do FAG wheel bearings help to keep you on the road, but as they are produced from the highest quality materials to stringent original equipment specifications, they will help keep you on the road for longer!