Modeling, analysis, and optimal design of the automotive transmission ball capsule system

Xingyong Song, Mohd Azrin Mohd Zulkefli, Zongxuan Sun, Hsu Chiang Miao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Clutch shift control is critical for the performance and fuel economy of automotive transmissions, including both automatic and hybrid transmissions. Among all the factors that influence clutch shift control, clutch fill and clutch engagement are crucial to realize a fast and smooth clutch shift. When the clutch is not engaged, the fluid held by the centrifugal force inside of the clutch chamber, which introduces additional pressure that will affect the subsequent clutch fill and engagement processes, should be released. To realize this function, a ball capsule system is introduced and mounted on the clutch chamber. When the clutch chamber is ready to be filled for engagement, the ball capsule needs to close quickly and remain closed until the clutch is disengaged. It is also desirable to have an appropriate closing velocity for the ball capsule to minimize noise and wear. In this paper, the ball capsule dynamics is modeled, in which the derivation of the ball capsule throttling area is considered novel and critical because of its asymmetrical nature. Through this, the ball capsule's intrinsic positive feedback structure is also revealed, which is considered to be the key to realize a fast response. Moreover, through the system dynamics analysis, the slope angle of the capsule is found to be an effective control parameter for system performance and robustness. To this end, the optimal shape of the capsule is designed using dynamic programming to achieve the desired performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Dynamic Systems, Measurement and Control, Transactions of the ASME
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2010


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