What is Anti-locking Braking System (ABS) ?


Anti-locking braking system is a very important technology that the road vehicles are equipped with today. ABS is pivotal when it comes to avoiding locking up of wheels and uncontrollable skidding off of the vehicle which occurs subject to certain conditions. Depending upon the terrain the wheels are in contact with, the traction may differ on each wheel. This results in a difference in the rotations of the wheels. With ABS technology, there are sensors which detect this difference. Accordingly it modifies the brake pressure on the wheel and is reduced if the wheel is rotating slower that the others and increased if the wheel is rotating faster to create an equilibrium.

The fundamental components in ABS are the sensors at the wheels and the steering, valves and a pump to change the pressure of the brakes as required and a controller which receives the signals from the sensors and instruct the valves to be turned on or off as and when needed. There are basically 5 types of ABS and they are bifurcated primarily on the basis of the number of channels, that is, the number of valves that are distinctively controlled and the quantity of speed sensors. They are:

  1. Four channel, four sensor ABS
  2. Three channel, four sensor ABS
  3. Three channel, three sensor ABS
  4. Two channel, four sensor ABS
  5. One channel, one sensor ABS

Four channels, four sensors is the most efficient system since there is a sensor on every wheel and a separate valve to control each wheel. The others are either used in vehicles like pick-up trucks or used in the past.
There has been a lot of development upon the concept of ABS and most modern electronic control systems are outcomes of further transformation of this concept for better. ABS plays a very important role in avoiding multiple car crashes and crashes due to vehicles running off road. Apart from the traction control and effective braking on slippery surfaces, ABS being a tested safety feature increases the resale value and decreases the insurance costs. Sliding and skidding of cars is a very dangerous situation and even experienced drivers have a hard time controlling the vehicle. ABS provides safety is the trickiest of conditions and that is the reason for the importance that this technology has received since its introduction to the world of automobile.  
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About Yug Desai

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