Apple Patents Steer-By-Wire System For Autonomous Cars

An intriguing patent from Apple indicates that the technology company is still very much interested in getting involved in the automotive market.

Patently Apple recently stumbled across a patent filed by Apple two years ago, but only just published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The patent relates to the suspension architecture of a car and the incorporation of a steer-by-wire system.

Also Read: Apple’s Autonomous Vehicles Travel Just 1.1 Miles Between Disengagements

The steering and suspension systems outlined by Apple in the patent would work best for an autonomous vehicle, and is basically a component connecting the vehicle frame and the steering wheel as well as a distinct steering knuckle which defines a steering axis for the wheel with a caster inclination angle of zero degrees.

Typically, cars have a positive caster angle, but a self-driving vehicle doesn’t need to provide any type of steering feel to a driver, so the caster angle sits at zero. The use of a suspension like the one shown by Apple in the patent could also result in reduced tire wear and better directional stability. >

It’s all rather interesting but it’s hard to say if Apple will bring such a system to the market as, in the two years since this patent was first filed, a lot is thought to have happened with the company’s Project Titan autonomous vehicle group.

Apple dismissed more than 200 employees involved in Project Titan.


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