Vehicle suspension system parameters for a quartercar model.
1. Introduction
The main objective on the active vibration control problem of vehicles suspension systems is to get security and comfort for the passengers by reducing to zero the vertical acceleration of the body of the vehicle. An actuator incorporated to the suspension system applies the control forces to the vehicle body of the automobile for reducing its vertical acceleration in active or semiactive way.
The topic of active vehicle suspension control system has been quite challenging over the years. Some research works in this area propose control strategies like LQR in combination with nonlinear backstepping control techniques (Liu et al., 2006) which require information of the state vector (vertical positions and speeds of the tire and car body). A reduced order controller is proposed in (Yousefi et al., 2006) to decrease the implementation costs without sacrificing the security and the comfort by using accelerometers for measurements of the vertical movement of the tire and car body. In (Tahboub, 2005), a controller of variable gain that considers the nonlinear dynamics of the suspension system is proposed. It requires measurements of the vertical position of the car body and the tire, and the estimation of other states and of the profile of the ride.
This chapter proposes a control design approach for active vehicle suspension systems using electromagnetic or hydraulic actuators based on the Generalized Proportional Integral (GPI) control design methodology, sliding modes and differential flatness, which only requires vertical displacement measurements of the vehicle body and the tire. The profile of the ride is considered as an unknown disturbance that cannot be measured. The main idea is the use of integral reconstruction of the nonmeasurable state variables instead of state observers. This approach is quite robust against parameter uncertainties and exogenous perturbations. Simulation results obtained from Matlab are included to show the dynamic performance and robustness of the proposed active control schemes for vehicles suspension systems.
GPI control for the regulation and trajectory tracking tasks on time invariant linear systems was introduced by Fliess and coworkers in (Fliess et al., 2002). The main objective is to avoid the explicit use of state observers. The integral reconstruction of the state variables is carried out by means of elementary algebraic manipulations of the system model along with suitable invocation of the system model observability property. The purpose of integral reconstructors is to get expressions for the unmeasured states in terms of inputs, outputs, and sums of a finite number of iterated integrals of the measured variables. In essence, constant errors and iterated integrals of such constant errors are allowed on these reconstructors. The current states thus differ from the integrally reconstructed states in time polynomial functions of finite order, with unknown coefficients related to the neglected, unknown, initial conditions. The use of these integral reconstructors in the synthesis of a modelbased computed stabilizing state feedback controller needs suitable counteracting the effects of the implicit time polynomial errors. The destabilizing effects of the state estimation errors can be compensated by additively complementing a pure state feedback controller with a linear combination of a sufficient number of iterated integrals of the output tracking error, or output stabilization error. The closed loop stability is guaranteed by a simple characteristic polynomial assignment to the higher order compensated controllable and observable inputoutput dynamics. Experimental results of the GPI control obtained in a platform of a rotational mechanical system with one and two degrees of freedom are presented in (ChávezConde et al., 2006). Sliding mode control of a differentially flat system of two degrees of freedom, with vibration attenuation, is shown in (EnríquezZárate et al., 2000). Simulation results of GPI and sliding mode control techniques for absorption of vibrations of a vibrating mechanical system of two degrees of freedom were presented in (BeltránCarbajal et al., 2003).
This chapter is organized as follows: Section 2 presents the linear mathematical models of suspension systems of a quarter car. The design of the controllers for the active suspension systems are introduced in Sections 3 and 4. Section 5 divulges the use of sensors for measuring the variables required by the controller while the simulation results are shown in Section 6. Finally, conclusions are brought out in Section 7.
2. Quartercar suspension systems
2.1. Mathematical model of passive suspension system
A schematic diagram of a quartervehicle suspension system is shown in Fig. 1(a). The mathematical model of passive suspension system is described by
where
2.2. Mathematical model of active electromagnetic suspension system
A schematic diagram of a quartercar active electromagnetic suspension system is illustrated in Fig.1 (b). The electromagnetic actuator replaces the damper, forming a suspension with the spring (Martins et al., 2006). The friction force of an electromagnetic actuator is neglected. The mathematical model of electromagnetic active suspension system is given by
where
2.3. Mathematical model of hydraulic active suspension system
Fig. 1(c) shows a schematic diagram of a quartercar active hydraulic suspension system. The mathematical model of this active suspension system is given by
where
3. Control of electromagnetic suspension system
The mathematical model of the active electromagnetic suspension system, illustrated in Fig. 1(b) is given by the equations (3) and (4). Defining the state variables
The force provided by the electromagnetic actuator as the control input is
The system is controllable with controllability matrix,
and flat (Fliess et al., 1993; SiraRamírez & Agrawal, 2004), with the flat output given by the following expression relating the displacements of both masses (Chávez et al., 2009):
For simplicity, in the analysis of the differential flatness for the suspension system we have assumed that
Then, the state variables and control input are parameterized in terms of the flat output as follows
3.1. Integral reconstructors
The control input
where
where
An integral inputoutput parameterization of the state variables is obtained from equation (11), and given by
For simplicity, we will denote the integral
The relations between the state variables and the integrally reconstructed states are given by
where
3.2. Sliding mode and GPI control
GPI control is based on the use of integral reconstructors of the unmeasured state variables and the output error is integrally compensated. The sliding surface inspired on the GPI control technique can be proposed as
The last integral term yields error compensation, eliminating destabilizing effects, those of the structural estimation errors. The ideal sliding condition
The gains of the controller
The sliding surface
where
with
This controller requires only the measurement of the variables of state
4. Control of hydraulic suspension system
The mathematical model of active suspension system shown in Fig. 1(c) is given by the equations (5) and (6). Using the same state variables definition than the control of electromagnetic suspension system, the representation in the state space form is as follows:
The net force provided by the hydraulic actuator as control input
The system is controllable and flat (Fliess et al., 1993; SiraRamírez & Agrawal, 2004), with positions of the body of the car and wheel as output
It is assumed that
Then, the state variables and control input are parameterized in terms of the flat output as follows
4.1. Integral reconstructors
The control input
where
where
An integral inputoutput parameterization of the state variables is obtained from equation (20), and given by
For simplicity, we have denoted the integral
The relationship between the state variables and the integrally reconstructed state variables is given by
where
4.2. Sliding mode and GPI control
The sliding surface inspired on the GPI control technique is proposed according to equations (12), (13), and (14). This sliding surface is globally attractive (Utkin, 1978). Then the following slidingmode controller is obtained:
With
This controller requires only the measurement of the variables of state
5. Instrumentation of active suspension system
5.1. Measurements required
The only variables required for implementation of the proposed controllers are the vertical displacement of the body of the car
5.2. Using sensors
In (Chamseddine et al., 2006), the use of sensors in experimental vehicle platforms, as well as in commercial vehicles is presented. The most common sensors, used for measuring the vertical displacement of the body of the car and the wheels, are laser sensors. This type of sensor could be used to measure the variables
The schematic diagram of the instrumentation of the active suspension system is illustrated in Fig. 2.
6. Simulation results with MATLAB/Simulink
The simulation results were obtained by means of MATLAB/Simulink
6.1. Parameters and type of road disturbance
The numerical values of the quartercar suspension model parameters (Sam & Hudha, 2006) chosen for the simulations are shown in Table 1.
Parameter  Value 
Sprung mass, 

Unsprung mass, 

Spring stifness, 

Damping constant, 

Tire stifness, 

In this simulation study, the road disturbance is shown in Fig. 3 and set in the form of (Sam & Hudha, 2006):
with
The road disturbance was programmed into Simulink blocks, as shown in Fig. 4. Here, the block called “conditions” was developed as a Simulink subsystem block Fig. 5.
6.2. Passive vehicle suspension system
Some simulation results of the passive suspension system performance are shown in Fig. 6. The Simulink model of the passive suspension system used for the simulations is shown in Fig. 7.
6.3. Control of electromagnetic suspension system
It is desired to stabilize the system at the positions
with
The Simulink model of the sliding mode based GPI controller of the active suspension system is shown in Fig. 8. The simulation results are illustrated in Fig. 9 It can be seen the high vibration attenuation level of the active vehicle suspension system compared with the passive counterpart.
6.3. Control of hydraulic suspension system
It is desired to stabilize the system in the positions
with
The same Matlab/Simulink simulation programs were used to implement the controllers for the electromagnetic and hydraulic active suspension systems. For the electromagnetic active suspension system, it is assumed that
7. Conclusions
In this chapter we have presented an approach of robust active vibration control schemes for electromagnetic and hydraulic vehicle suspension systems based on Generalized ProportionalIntegral control, differential flatness and sliding modes. Two controllers have been proposed to attenuate the vibrations induced by unknown exogenous disturbance excitations due to irregular road surfaces. The main advantage of the controllers proposed, is that they require only measurements of the position of the car body and the tire. Integral reconstruction is employed to get structural estimates of the time derivatives of the flat output, needed for the implementation of the controllers proposed. The simulation results show that the stabilization of the vertical position of the quarter of car is obtained within a period of time much shorter than that of the passive suspension system. The fast stabilization with amplitude in acceleration and speed of the body of the car is observed. Finally, the robustness of the controllers to stabilize to the system before the unknown disturbance is verified.
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