Active direct tilt control for stability enhancement of a narrow commuter vehicle

D. Piyabongkarn, T. Keviczky, R. Rajamani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Narrow commuter vehicles can address many congestion, parking and pollution issues associated with urban transportation. In making narrow vehicles safe, comfortable and acceptable to the public, active tilt control systems are likely to play a crucial role. This paper focuses on the development of an active direct tilt control system for a narrow vehicle that utilizes an actuator in the vehicle suspension. A simple PD controller can stabilize the tilt dynamics of the vehicle to any desired tilt angle. However, the challenges in the tilt control system design arise in determining the desired lean angle in real-time and in minimizing tilt actuator torque requirements. Minimizing torque requirements requires the tilting and turning of the vehicle to be synchronized as closely as possible. This paper explores two different control design approaches to meet these challenges. A Receding Horizon Controller (RHC) is first developed so as to systematically incorporate preview on road curvature and synchronize tilting with driver initiated turning. Second, a nonlinear control system that utilizes feedback linearization is developed and found to be effective in reducing torque. A close analysis of the complex feedback linearization controller provides insight into which terms are important for reducing actuator effort. This is used to reduce controller complexity and obtain a simple nonlinear controller that provides good performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)77-78
Number of pages2
JournalInternational Journal of Automotive Technology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 2004


  • Direct tilt control
  • Feedback linearization
  • Narrow tilting vehicle
  • Receding horizon control


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