Sensotronic Brake Control Abstract Sensotronic Brake Control (SBC) is an electronic system which Mercedes-Benz introduced in October 2001, and has been fitting on passenger car models since. Following the ideas like ABS ASR, ESP and Brake Assist, this system is regarded as another important milestone to enhance driving safety. Also, the system offers features to reduce the driver’s workload. These featured include: Traffic Jam Assist, which breaks the vehicle automatically in the bumper-to-bumper traffic once the driver takes his or her foot off the accelerator. The Soft-Stop function, which allows soft and smooth stopping in town traffic. Thus, SBC transforms the conventional hydraulic brake into a more powerful mechatronic system. In the old brake system, when drivers hit the brake pedal, their foot moves a piston rod which is linked to the brake booster and the master brake cylinder. Depending on the pedal force, the master brake cylinder builds up the appropriate amount of pressure in the brake lines which in turn presses the brake pads against the brake discs via the wheel cylinders. By contrast, in the Mercedes-Benz Sensotronic Brake Control, a large number of mechanical components are simply replaced by electronics. The brake booster will not be needed in future either. Instead sensors gauge the pressure inside the master brake cylinder as well as the speed with which the brake pedal is operated, and pass these data to the Sensotronic Brake Control computer in the form of electric impulses. To provide the driver with the familiar brake feel, the engineers have developed a special simulator which is linked to the following master cylinder and which moves the pedal using spring force and hydraulics. In other words: during braking, the actuation unit is completely disconnected from the rest of the system and serves the sole purpose of recording any brake command.
Mechatronics a new term is gaining popularity within the automotive industry and is rapidly developing thus bringing about technological revolution. Mechatronics brings together two disciplines viz. mechanics and electronics.Because of mechatronics, automobile functions which worked purely mechanically and partly with hydraulic assistance earlier, are now being controlled by high-performance microcomputers and electronically controllable actuators. These either replace the conventional mechanical components or else enhance their function. The mechatronic interface therefore opens up to unexplored possibilities which further raise the safety and comfort levels of modern passenger cars. For example: it was only because of mechatronics that an electronically controlled suspension system which instantly adapts to prevailing conditions when driving off, braking or cornering became a reality. This suspension gave a completely new experience. In 1999 Mercedes-Benz launched this system under the name Active Body Control (ABC) in the flagship CL coupé, thereby signalling the advent of a new era of suspension technology. This electronically controlled suspension system was followed by an electronic brake system. Mercedes-Benz and Bosch teamed up on the development project which later came forth under the name Sensotronic Brake Control (or SBC).
The conventional braking systems have the disadvantage of causing excessive fatigue to the driver under extreme braking conditions. With the help of sensotronic braking systems the above disadvantage is being efficiently overcome with the help of sensors. The Sensotronic braking systems can be considered as the basis of development of future brakes for all automobiles due to its efficiency and reliability.