A new tire-road friction coefficient estimation approach based on lateral carcass deflection measurements is proposed. The unique design of the developed wireless piezoelectric sensor decouples lateral carcass deformations from radial and tangential carcass deformations. The estimation of the tire-road friction coefficient depends on the estimation of the slip angle and the lateral tire force. The tire slip angle is estimated as the slope of the lateral deflection curve at the leading edge of the contact patch. The lateral tire force is obtained by using a parabolic relationship with the lateral deflections in the contact patch. The estimated slip angle and lateral force are then plugged into a tire brush model to estimate the tire-road friction coefficient. A specially constructed tire test-rig is used to experimentally evaluate the performance of the tire sensor and the developed approach. Experimental results show that the proposed tire-road friction coefficient estimation approach is quite promising.

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