Cannondale's new toy

Bikemagic Bikemagic










So this bit connects to that bit, and it all goes up and down? Cannondale’s patent
for suspension control…

Cannondale have had a patent granted for a new electronic
suspension control system, using tiny electric motors to alter the ride of the bike.

Selecting the ride characteristics from a suspension “map”, the computer
trickery will tune the ride of the bike by using servos to alter the flow of damping
fluid through the valves.



It’s a system that has seen use on motorbikes before. Adrian Ward, designer for ATB
Sales told BIKEmagic “WP used to have a system on motorbikes, where winding
on the throttle used to also wind on [rear shock] compression damping with a remotely controlled
servo. Seems like a lot of trouble to save you fiddling with the knobs, cos I don’t
think it can work fast enough to tune the ride for individual bumps.”



Cannondales full patent description reads as follows:-



An active, hydraulic suspension system for a wheeled vehicle is disclosed.
The system utilizes an on-board damper controller, a damper having a pair of telescoping
tubes and a motor-adjusted hydraulic channel, a position and direction sensor to
achieve comprehensive control over dampening performance. The rider is allowed to
change the damping performance by selecting a control map which dictates the damping
force applied based on the position, direction of motion, and velocity of one tube
relative to the other. The system continuously varies the amount of dampening in
real time in response to the terrain conditions, as determined by a sensor. A processor
in the damper controller accepts the sensor input and outputs motor control signals
based on information existent in the control map. The motor adjusts the flow of a
viscous liquid through the hydraulic channel of the damper in accordance with the
control signals received from the damper controller to achieve the desired damping
performance. An external computer may be used to load control maps to the damper
controller for subsequent selection by a rider
.”



Details can be seen at
target="_blank">http://www.patents.ibm.com/cgi-bin/viewpat.cmd/US05971116__ SIZE="2" FACE="Arial">

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