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Wed, Jul

Autonomous driving, redundancy is mandatory


In order to achieve completely autonomous driving for an accident-free future, redundancy in critical safety systems such as braking and steering is crucial.

This is what the company Bosch believes and now it is putting on the market redundant braking solutions to support all levels of automation, thanks to which the continuity of all critical safety functions during which the driver response time is ensured. In reliability engineering, redundancy is defined as the existence of multiple means to perform a given function, arranged in such a way that a system failure can occur only as a result of the simultaneous failure of all these means. The level 3 SAE vehicles (conditioned automation) that will soon be on the market, still need a human driver, but critical safety situations can be completely managed by the vehicle in certain traffic or environmental conditions. The Bosch solution combines the actions of an electro-mechanical servo-brake and Electronic Stability Control system (ESC): both are able to brake independently of one another and ensure continuity of functions – a safe stop – in case of need or in single failure. 

The technological breakthrough was achieved by modifying one element of the system: the vacuum brake booster was replaced by an intelligent electro-mechanical servo-brake, the iBooster. A traditional braking system includes two actuators: vacuum booster and ESC unit. The redundant braking system consists of two actuators, each of which is able to decelerate the vehicle regardless of whether the driver uses the brake pedal. Even if a failure occurs in the braking system, the actuator (iBooster or ESC) prevents the wheel from becoming immobilized by modulating the braking pressure, allowing stability and the ability to steer during deceleration. Alongside the redundant braking system presented at the North American International Auto Show (Naias 2018), Bosch has also studied the redundant steering system, Electric Power Steering (EPS) system with failed operation functions that allows the driver or autopilot to perform a stop safe in the rare case of a single failure.