Title: Active trailer steering control of an articulated system with a tractor and three full trailers for tractor-track following

Authors: Krishna Rangavajhula, H.-S. Jacob Tsao

Addresses: Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, San Jose State University, One Washington Square, San Jose, CA 95192-0085, USA. ' Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, San Jose State University, One Washington Square, San Jose, CA 95192-0085, USA

Abstract: We examine several control strategies to minimise off-tracking of a multi-axle steering system with a tractor and three full trailers, described by a linear yaw-plane model. Given any arbitrary tractor track desired real-time by the driver, control inputs are the steering angles of front axles of the trailers. A minimum Rearward Amplification Ratio (RWA), as a surrogate for minimum off-tracking, is used as the control criterion to arrive at an optimal LQR controller, which is remarkably robust to tyre-parameter variations. Actively steering trailers 1 and 2 is most cost-effective in achieving acceptable levels of RWA, with off-tracking practically eliminated.

Keywords: longer combination vehicles; LCV; heavy trucks; off-tracking; active trailer steering; rearward amplification; lateral dynamics; steering control; heavy vehicles; articulated systems tractor-trailer systems; multi-axle steering.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHVS.2007.015604

International Journal of Heavy Vehicle Systems, 2007 Vol.14 No.3, pp.271 - 293

Published online: 02 Nov 2007 *

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