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Unique Anti-Roll System Gives Hybrid Car Competitive Edge


A team of engineering students at the University of Victoria recently developed a unique system utilizing Clippard pneumatic cylinders to give their hybrid car a competitive edge by reducing body roll during cornering.

UVic Hybrid Car Clippard Cylinders in UVic Hybrid Car

Anti-roll bars are conventionally employed to reduce body roll during cornering and allow tuning of handling properties. A typical anti-roll bar is simply a bent steel tube that acts a torsional spring between the two sides of the car in the front and the back.

The UVic car was designed with a more novel solution, utilizing Clippard double-acting cylinders on each corner of the car. The upper chamber of each cylinder—with respect to the car—is considered the positive chamber and the lower the negative. The positive chamber on one side is linked directly to the negative on the other side with a valve on the line to allow filling. Both lines are set to the same pressure. When both wheels move up, such as when the car dives under braking or goes over a speedbump, the positive chambers of both sides shrink at the same rate as the negative chambers grow and there is no pressure change. However, when the car rolls the positive chamber on one side grows while the positive chamber on the other side shrinks. This creates a big pressure differential and prevents the car from rolling past a small amount.

UVic Hybrid Team Wins First Place

The UVic Hybrid Team's system has proven to be hugely effective, allowing them to trim their car's body roll to near zero. Unlike conventional anti-roll bars which have to be unbolted and moved to adjust rates, UVic's system is easily adjustable using a small hand pump to set the pressures. This is a big benefit, as it allows very fast adjustment on the track.

The team's efforts paid off, winning them first place in the hybrid category at the 2016 Forumula Hybrid Competition. They also won three other significant design awards, including a perfect score in the prestigious design review event.

Congratulations to the UVic Hybrid Team!

The UVic Hybrid Team is a group of UVic engineering students that design, build and compete with hybrid vehicles. Their vehicles challenge the status-quo of hybrid vehicle technology, with performance and efficiency far above conventional vehicles.

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