Rocket assistance to save motor cyclists
Motorcycling is great fun, and often the fastest way to travel – but problems arise when weather changes or the road gets slippery, and two wheels don’t give the grip of four.
So Bosch has come up with an innovating way to “lift” a bike that’s starting to lose traction – by applying “rocket” power.
Often a motorcyclist will be able to right the bike by applying power, but it needs a lot of skill and road room to do so. An additional lateral force, however, could do the trick, and this is the idea behind the sliding mitigation Bosch is developing in a research project. Like a magic hand, it keeps the motorcycle on track and considerably reduces the risk of a fall.
A sensor detects sideways wheel slip. If a certain value is exceeded, gas is released from a gas accumulator of the type used in passenger-car airbags. The gas flows into the tank adapter and is vented in a certain direction through a nozzle; this reverse thrust keeps the motorcycle on track.
Yes, there are a few questions to be answered, such as how much gas is needed and where there’s space on a bike, as well as recharging, etc., but the fact it, is DOES work – Bosch has built a working prototype.
Bosch is also working on other systems. One is to give motorcycles radar as a sensory organ to enables new motorcycle assistance and safety functions while providing an accurate picture of the vehicle’s surroundings. As a result, these assistance functions not only increase safety, they also enhance enjoyment and convenience by making life easier for riders.
One such function is adaptive cruise control (ACC), as found in many cars today. Riding in heavy traffic and maintaining the correct distance to the vehicle in front takes a great deal of concentration and is strenuous over longer periods. ACC adjusts the vehicle speed to the flow of traffic and maintains the necessary safe following distance.
This can effectively prevent rearend collisions caused by insufficient distance to the vehicle in front. And not only does ACC offer riders more convenience, it also allows them to concentrate more on the road, particularly in high-density traffic.
Another is forward collision warning system. In road traffic, even the briefest lapse in concentration can have serious consequences. Bosch has developed a collision warning system for motorcycles to reduce the risk of a rear-end collision or to mitigate its consequences. The system is active as soon as the vehicle starts and it supports the rider in all relevant speed ranges.
If the system detects that another vehicle is dangerously close and the rider does not react to the situation, it warns the rider by way of an acoustic or optical signal.
Then there’s blind-spot detection. This system keeps a lookout in all directions to help motorcyclists change lanes safely. A radar sensor serves as the blind-spot recognition system’s electronic eye, registering objects in hard-to-see areas. Whenever there is a vehicle in the rider’s blind spot, the technology warns them by way of an optical signal – for example, in the rear-view mirror.
And, of course, there’s ABS. Since 1984, Bosch has been continuously perfecting motorcycle ABS technology in order to make this important safety technology available for all vehicle classes in every market.
According to Bosch accident research, roughly one in four motorcycle accidents involving fatalities and injuries could be prevented if all two-wheelers were fitted with ABS. Worldwide, more and more countries and regions, including the EU, Japan, Taiwan, and Brazil, are mandating motorcycle ABS.
Since April this year motorcycle ABS has been mandatory in India for all new two-wheeler types with an engine displacement above 125cc. ABS 10 was designed specifically to meet the requirements for motorised twowheelers in emerging markets.
Motorcycle stability control is the world’s first all-in-one safety system for two-wheelers. By monitoring two-wheeler parameters such as lean angle, the system can instantaneously adjust its electronic braking and acceleration interventions to suit the current riding status. In this way, the Bosch system can prevent the bike from low siding or righting itself suddenly and uncontrollably when braking in bends, which is where the majority of motorcycle accidents occur. The new 6D sensor in the MSC system is the smallest and lightest design on the market. It significantly improves mounting flexibility, and is less prone to vibration.
Motorcycle-to-car communication is another important function. By enabling motorcycles and cars to communicate with each other, Bosch is creating a digital shield for motorcyclists. Up to 10 times a second, vehicles within a radius of several hundred meters exchange information about vehicle type, speed, position, and direction of travel.
Long before a motorcycle comes into view, this technology warns drivers and the sensors in their vehicles that a motorcycle is approaching. This allows them to drive better and more defensively.
Side thrusters can help “lift” a bike if its low siding because of ice, gravel, or wet leaves on the road.
Connectivity. These two are going to meet – but if they’re connected it doesn’t have to result in a crash!