Active Braking Systems

Active braking system is also known by other names such as Advanced Emergency Braking System (AEBS) or Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB). It uses a collection of vehicle sensors that monitors the presence of vehicles ahead and around the vehicle. It also has the ability to detect any situation where there’s an impending collision with another vehicle.

The braking system includes front and rear automatic brakes found in Cadillac, presafe brake system in Mercedes Benz, and other car models which alert the driver of a potential collision with another.

There are many ways to signal the driver of an impending collision like audio alerts and haptic or tactile feedback such as the vibrating steering wheel or seat. At the same time, the active braking system prepares the car brake system for power maximization once pressed. This is employed in Volvo’s City Safe Continental System which stops the vehicle even without the driver’s input.

Why active braking system is important?

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) has made active braking system mandatory in new heavy vehicles manufactured from 2013. Using the system, a reduction in accidents of 27% which accounts to eight thousand lives per year will be expected.

Researches on this system have reported that by reducing stopping distance, there were many benefits to road safety as a result of decreased stopping distances:

  • Active Braking Systems showed in simulator trials that stopping distances is reduced by 45%
  • Car crash rates were reduced by 75% using the preliminary radar based systems
  • 70% of collision cases were avoided using the partial automatic braking

Aside from accident reduction, the system will help the driver to:

  • Prevent rear collisions by helping with maximum brake force in times of emergency
  • Warn him of any potential collision with a coming car or hurdle

How does the system work?

The active braking systems are of many different versions and each provides varying degree of brake support.

  • Brake assist measures the speed and brake force applied to detect when the driver attempts to stop in emergency situations
  • Antilock braking system works by maintaining traction contact, preventing wheel lock up and uncontrolled skidding.
  • Collision warning with brake support is found in Volvo and brake assist system in Mercedes Benz by using radar and cameras to detect any danger around and near the vehicle.
  • Audiovisual warning signals the driver and prepares him for maximum brake application when a potential crash is identified.
  • Presafe and collision avoidance with auto brake are added safety features in Mercedes Benz and Volvo, respectively. They allow the vehicle to apply brakes automatically to slow down the car when driver does not respond to warnings on an impending collision.