Editor: Sohel Anwar

Fault Tolerant Drive By Wire Systems: Impact on Vehicle Safety and Reliability

eBook: US $39 Special Offer (PDF + Printed Copy): US $90
Printed Copy: US $71
Library License: US $156
ISBN: 978-1-60805-667-5 (Print)
ISBN: 978-1-60805-307-0 (Online)
Year of Publication: 2012
DOI: 10.2174/97816080530701120101


This e-book details state-of-the-art drive by wire technology. Readers are made aware about the challenges ahead that need be addressed in order for this technology to gain a foothold in the automotive industry. The eBook presents a systematic analysis of these issues and points out the fundamental reasons for the limited applications of these systems to date. It also discusses how recent technological advances in fault tolerant control can address these current challenges facing drive by wire application in automobiles. Non-technological issues such as consumer perception of drive by wire systems, trade-off analysis of drive by wire system from Automotive OEMs and suppliers’ perspective are also reviewed in this volume. This book will enhance current understanding of this technology amongst practicing automotive engineers and researchers alike.

Indexed in: Book Citation Index, Science Edition, Scopus, EBSCO.


High-integrity systems require a comprehensive fault tolerance for the components and the corresponding control system. This includes the design of fault-tolerant sensors, actuators, process parts, computers, communication (bus) systems and control-algorithms. The fault tolerance is frequently based on redundancy in hardware and also software, either as static redundancy with several modules or dynamic redundancy with cold or hot standby modules. Examples of such redundant systems are known for train and nuclear power systems, and for space vehicles and aircraft. Especially the fly-by-wire systems for aircraft demonstrate a very high state-of the art of hardware and software redundancy and fault tolerance.

Drive-by-wire systems for automobiles at the actuator level are since more than 15 years in series production for e.g. the electrical throttle, automatic transmissions, electro-hydraulic brakes and parking brakes. For steering the hydraulic power steering has been replaced by the electrical power steering up to middle class cars, but is still based on the mechanical steering column. This means, that for this very safety critical chassis component one relies on a mechanical back-up in case of a failure of the power support.

Compared to fly-by wire systems drive-by-wire systems cannot have the high level of redundancies because of costs, maintenance issues and the large production numbers with are use by non trained drivers, as compared to professional pilots, and any kind of environment and usage. However, in general context of the electrification of automobiles and advanced driver assistance systems the future will show how far drive-by-wire systems will develop. The modern driver assistance and chassis control systems like ABS, ESC, ACC and suspension control are already “by-wire” or “bycontrol software” on higher levels.

Therefore this book is a timely compilation of the present and future development of fault-tolerant drive-by-wire systems by having a focus on the important issues of safety and reliability. I wish Professor Sohel Anwar and the authors of this e-book a very good success.

Rolf Isermann
Darmstadt, January 2011