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Vehicle System Dynamics 0042-3114/02/3706-423$16.

00
2002, Vol. 37, No. 6, pp. 423447
#
Swets & Zeitlinger
A Motorcycle Multi-Body Model for Real Time
Simulations Based on the Natural
Coordinates Approach
VITTORE COSSALTER
1
and ROBERTO LOT
2
SUMMARY
This paper presents an eleven degrees of freedom, non-linear, multi-body dynamics model of a motorcycle.
Front and rear chassis, steering system, suspensions and tires are the main features of the model.
An original tire model was developed, which takes into account the geometric shape of tires and the
elastic deformation of tire carcasses. This model also describes the dynamic behavior of tires in a way
similar to relaxation models.
Equations of motion stemfrom the natural coordinates approach. First, each rigid body is described with
a set of fully cartesian coordinates. Then, links between the bodies are obtained by means of algebraic
equations. This makes it possible to obtain simple equations of motion, even though the coordinates are
redundant.
The model was implemented in a Fortran code, named FastBike. In order to test the code, both simulated
and real slalom and lane change maneuvers were carried out. Avery good agreement between the numerical
simulations and experimental test was found. The comparison of FastBike's performance with those of some
commercial software shows that rst is much faster than others. In particular, real time simulations can be
carried out using FastBike and it can be employed on a motorcycle simulator.
1. INTRODUCTION
The use of computer simulations in motorcycle engineering makes it possible both to
reduce designing time and costs and to avoid the risks and dangers associated with
experiments and tests. The multi-body model for computer simulations can be built
either by developing a mathematical model of the vehicle or by using commercial
software for vehicle system dynamics. Even though the rst method is more difcult
and time consuming than the second, maximum exibility in the description of the
features of the model can be obtained only by using a mathematical model. In
particular, it makes it possible to properly describe the tire behavior at large camber
1
Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Padova, Italy.
2
Corresponding author: Roberto Lot, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Padova, Via
Venezia 1, 35131 Padova, Italy. Tel.: 39 049 8276806; Fax: 39 049 8276785; E-mail: roberto.lot@unipd.it;
website: www.dinamoto.mecc.unipd.it
angles, whereas multi-body codes such as ADAMS, DADS or Visual Nastran lack
such a feature. Moreover, mathematical modeling has a high computation efciency,
while multi-body software require a lot of time to carry out simulations.
For the reasons above, the focus of this study was to develop mathematical models
of a tire and motorcycle. The tire model properly describes the shape of the carcass
and the position of the contact point. Moreover, it takes into account the sliding of the
contact patch and the deformation of the tire carcass. The motorcycle model was
developed based on the natural coordinates approach [1], which makes it possible to
obtain simple equations of motion and hence high computation efciency.
2. MOTORCYCLE AND RIDER DESCRIPTION
The motorcycle is modeled as a system of six bodies: the front and rear wheels, the
rear assembly (including frame, engine and fuel tank), the front assembly (including
steering column, handle-bar and front fork), the rear swinging arm and the unsprung
front mass (including fork and brake pliers). The driver is considered to be rigidly
attached to the rear assembly; front and rear assembly are linked by means of the
steering mechanism. The front suspension is a telescopic type and the rear suspension
is a swinging arm type.
This vehicle model has eleven degrees of freedom, which can be associated to the
coordinates of the rear assembly center of mass, the yaw angle, the roll angle, the
pitch angle, the steering angle, the travel of front and rear suspension and the spin
rotation of both wheels (see Fig. 1).
Fig. 1. Eleven degrees of freedom motorcycle model.
424 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
The following forces act on the motorcycle elements: suspensions forces due to
springs and shock-absorbers, tire forces and torques, aerodynamic forces, rider steering
torque, steer damper torque, rear and front brake torques and nally propulsive torque,
which is transmitted from the sprocket to the rear wheel by means of the chain.
The rider's actions on the motorcycle determine both the direction of the vehicle
and the forward speed. In this model, the rider is considered to be a rigid body
attached to the rear assembly, so that the rider's movement away from the saddle and
the corresponding control action are neglected. In this way the motorcycle's direction
is controlled only by the torque exerted on the handlebars (steering torque). The
forward speed is controlled by applying the brakes (rear and front brake torques) and
by acting on the accelerator lever (propulsive force).
3. TIRE MODEL
In motorcycles the roll angle can reach 5055

, hence it has a signicant inuence


both on tire forces and torques and on the contact patch. In this model, the actual
shape of the tire is described in detail and the deformation of the tire carcass is taken
into account. The roadtire contact is assumed to be dot-shaped and the position of the
contact point depends on the roll angle. Tire forces and torques are applied in the
contact point. The tire forces include the vertical load N, the lateral force F and the
longitudinal force S; the tire torques include the rolling friction torque M
y
and the yaw
torque M
z
.
The tire reference frame T
w
is dened by using 4 4 transformation matrix
notation [2], as shown in Figure 2: its origin is located in wheel center G, plane X
w
Z
w
is the symmetry plane of the wheel, the X
w
axis is horizontal and points forwards, the
Y
w
axis is parallel to the wheel spin axis and points rightwards and the Z
w
axis
completes the reference frame. The frame T
/
has its origin located in contact point C,
the road plane X
/
Y
/
is horizontal, the X
/
axis is parallel to X
w
, points forwards and has
unit vector s, the Y
/
axis points rightward and has unit vector n, the Z
/
axis is vertical
and points downwards.
As it is well known, horizontal tire forces depend on tread deformation and slide,
i.e., they depend on sideslip angle l, longitudinal slip k, camber angle j and vertical
load N as follows
S = S
slip
kY lY jY N ( )
F = F
slip
kY lY jY N ( )
(1)
In several tire models [35] the sideslip angle and longitudinal slip are dened
according to wheel kinematics, without taking into account the deformation of the tire
carcass. On the contrary, in this model slip quantities are dened considering the
actual contact point, which moves with respect to the rim because of the deformation
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 425
of tire carcass. Deformability of the tire carcass is taken into account as shown in
Figure 3. The contact point lies on the vertical plane which passes through the wheel
spin axis. The tire deection with respect to the rim consists of radial displacement
r
,
lateral displacement
l
and rotation x around the wheel spin axis. Moreover, it is
assumed that tire deformations do not alter the mass properties of the wheel.
Fig. 2. Tire kinematics and tire forces.
Fig. 3. Tire deformability.
426 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
The position of the contact point is expressed by means of its coordinates y
c
Y z
c
with respect to frame T
w
as follows
C = T
w
0Y y
c
Y z
c
Y 1
T
(2)
Thus, the instantaneous sideslip angle is dened as:
l = arctan
V
Y
V
X
= arctan

C n

C s
(3)
where V
X
is the forward speed, V
Y
the lateral speed, s and n the unit vectors of axis X
/
and Y
/
respectively.
The instantaneous longitudinal slip is dened as:
k = 1
V
R
V
X
= 1
z
c
(

y

x)

C s
(4)
where V
R
is the rolling speed which depends both on spin velocity

y and rotational
deformation rate

x.
On the other hand, tire forces depend on carcass deformation and camber angle, as
shown in experimental tests [6, 7]
S = S
elastic
xY j ( )
F = F
elastic

r
Y
l
Y j ( )
N = N
elastic

r
Y
l
Y j ( )
(5)
In absence of tire forces, no tire deection is present and the contact point
coincides with the point of tangency between the tire surface and road plane C
0
. Thus,
the position of the contact point only depends on the tire shape and the coordinates of
C
0
with respect to frame T
w
can be dened as a function of the roll angle, as follows
C
0
= T
w
0Y y
t
(j)Y z
t
(j)Y 1
T
(6)
where functions y
t
(j) and z
t
(j) make a parametric representation of the lateral prole
of the carcass. In order to guarantee the condition of tangency between tire and road
plane, functions must satisfy the following relation
tan(j) =
dz
t
dj
_
dy
t
dj
Lateral and radial deformation can be calculated by subtracting expression (6)
from expression (2), obtaining

l
= y
c
y
t
j ( )

r
= z
c
z
t
j ( )
(7)
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 427
This model is able to properly describe tire behavior both in steady state and
transient conditions. Indeed, by coupling Equation (1), which describe the behavior
of the contact patch during sliding, with Equation (5), which describe elasticity
properties of the tire carcass
S
slip
kY lY jY N ( ) S
elastic
xY j ( ) = 0
F
slip
kY lY jY N ( ) F
elastic

r
Y
l
Y j ( ) = 0
(8)
one obtains a description of tire behavior which is equivalent to relaxation tire models
[811]. To proof this, let us dene a linear relation between longitudinal force and
longitudinal slip
S = K
s
k (9)
and a linear relation between longitudinal force and rotational deformation
S = K
x
x (10)
where K
s
and K
x
are respectively the longitudinal slip stiffness and rotational stiffness
of tire. By substituting Equation (4) in Equation (9) and by rearranging terms, one
obtains:
S = K
S
1
z
c

y
V
X
_ _
K
S
z
c

x
V
X
= K
S
k
0
K
S
z
c

x
V
X
(11)
where k
0
is the steady state value of longitudinal slip, which corresponds to the steady
state value of longitudinal force S
0
X The time derivation of expression (10) yields:

x =

S
K
x
(12)
By replacing Equations (12) in Equation (11) and by rearranging the terms, one
obtains:
K
S
z
c
aK
x
V
X

S S = S
0
(13)
which is a rst order relaxation equation, where relaxation length is s = K
S
z
c
aK
x
. The
equivalence between this tire model and the relaxation model can be found for lateral
force as well.
This approach presents several advantages with respect to relaxation models. First,
it explains the physical behavior of the tire in more detail, by highlighting both the
deformability of the carcass and the sliding of the tread. Furthermore, with this tire
model only static and steady state experimental tests are required in order to
characterize tire behavior in both static and dynamic conditions.
428 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
In order to complete the model it is necessary to dene tire torques with respect to
the contact point. The rolling resistance torque is assumed to be proportional to the
wheel load
M
y
= N d (14)
where d is the rolling friction parameter.
Yaw torque M
z
is generated by lateral force F, tire trail t and twisting torque M
Tz
as
follows [1214]:
M
z
= t l ( )F M
Tz
j ( ) (15)
The rst term depends on the sideslip angle and tends to align, the second term
depends on the roll angle and tends to self-steer.
Finally, it is not necessary to take into account overturning moment M
x
, because
tire forces are applied in the actual contact point [3, 13, 14].
4. MULTI-BODY MODEL
The mathematical model of the motorcycle was developed based on the natural
coordinates approach [1]. Natural coordinates consist of cartesian coordinates of
points or direction cosines of vectors belonging to the bodies of the system. With this
approach, kinematic relationships and equations of motion are very simple. However,
the number of variables required for describing a system is larger than the number of
degrees of freedom and so additional constraint equations must be introduced.
The equations were derived using Maple
1
, a software which makes it possible to
perform symbolic manipulation efciently and to avoid calculation errors. Moreover,
it generates automatically the Fortran code.
4.1. Kinematic Description
Equations of motion were derived in the inertial reference frame XYZ: axes X and Y
are horizontal and lie on the road level, the Z axis is vertical and points downwards;
the unit vectors of inertial frame are, respectively, c
x
, c
y
and c
z
.
A body-xed frame T
i
is attached to each rigid body. The elements of the
transformation matrix are used as generalized coordinates, i.e., the conguration of
each body is described by means of the coordinates of origin and direction cosines of
the body-xed frame (see Fig. 4).
The rear tire reference frame T
w1
has its origin in the center of the wheel
G
1
= x
1
Y y
1
Y z
1
Y 1
T
and is dened as shown in Section 3, as well as the reference
frame T
/
1
. Moreover, the rear wheel xed-frame T
1
is obtained from frame T
w1
by a rotation of spin angle y
1
around Y
w1
axis. It is useful to dene the follow-
ing unit vectors: s
1
= s
x1
Y s
y1
Y 0Y 0
T
parallel to both X
w1
and X
/
1
axes,
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 429
w
1
= w
x1
Y w
y1
Y w
z1
Y 0
T
parallel to axis Y
w1
, v
1
= v
x1
Y y
y1
Y v
z1
Y 0
T
parallel to axis
Z
w1
and n
1
= s
y1
Y s
x1
Y 0Y 0
T
parallel to axis Y
/
1
.
The rear assembly xed-frame T
2
has its origin in the swinging arm pin joint
P
2
= x
2
Y y
2
Y z
2
Y 1
T
; plane X
2
Z
2
is parallel to plane X
1
Z
1
, the X
2
axis is perpendicular
to the steering axis, points forwards and has unit vector u
2
= u
x2
Y u
y2
Y u
z2
Y 0
T
, the Y
2
axis has unit vector w
2
= w
1
and nally the Z
2
axis is parallel to the steering axis and
has unit vector v
2
= v
x2
Y y
y2
Y v
z2
Y 0
T
.
The front assembly xed-frame T
3
has the origin in the point P
3
= x
3
Y y
3
Y z
3
Y 1
T
,
which is the intersection between the steering axis and its perpendicular plane passing
through P
2
. The X
3
Z
3
plane is parallel to the symmetry plane of the front wheel, the
X
3
axis is perpendicular to the steering axis, points forwards and has unit vector
u
3
= u
x3
Y u
y3
Y u
z3
Y 0
T
, the Y
3
axis is parallel to the front wheel spin axis and has unit
vector w
3
= w
x4
Y w
y4
Y w
z4
Y 0
T
, nally the Z
3
axis has a unit vector v
3
= v
2
.
The front tire reference frame T
w4
has its origin in the center of the wheel
G
4
= x
4
Y y
4
Y z
4
Y 1
T
and is dened as shown in Section 3, as well as the reference
frame T
/
4
. Besides, the front wheel xed-frame T
4
is obtained from frame T
w4
by a
rotation of spin angle y
4
around Y
w4
axis. The following unit vectors are dened:
s
4
= s
x4
Y s
y4
Y 0Y 0
T
parallel to both X
w4
and X
/
4
axis, w
4
= w
3
parallel to Y
w4
axis,
v
4
=v
x4
Y y
y4
Y v
z4
Y 0
T
parallel to Z
w4
axis and n
4
=s
y4
Y s
x4
Y 0Y 0
T
parallel to Y
/
4
axis.
Fig. 4. Description of multi-body system using basic points and unit vectors.
430 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
The swinging arm xed-frame T
5
has its origin in the rear wheel center G
1
, the X
5
axis is parallel to vector G
1
P
2
and has unit vector u
5
= u
x5
Y u
y5
Y u
z5
Y 0
T
, the Y
5
axis
has unit vector w
5
= w
1
and the Z
5
axis has unit vector v
5
= v
x5
Y y
y5
Y v
z5
Y 0
T
.
The front unsprung mass xed-frame T
6
has the origin on the center of mass
G
6
= T
4
G
x6
Y G
y6
Y G
z6
Y 1
T
Y X
6
Y Y
6
and Z
6
axes are parallel respectively to X
3
Y Y
3
and
Z
3
and their unit vectors are u
6
= u
3
, w
6
= w
4
, v
6
= v
2
.
The conguration of the motorcycle is described by means of a set of n = 45
coordinates, including the coordinates of points G
1
, P
2
, P
3
, G
4
, direction cosines of
unit vectors s
1
, v
1
, w
1
, u
2
, v
2
, u
3
, s
4
, v
4
, w
4
, u
5
, v
5
and spin rotations of both wheels:
q = x
1
Y y
1
Y z
1
Y s
x1
Y s
y1
Y w
x1
Y w
y1
Y w
z1
Y v
x1
Y v
y1
Y v
z1
Y y
1
Y x
2
Y y
2
Y z
2
Y u
x2
Y u
y2
Y u
z2
Y v
x2
Y v
y2
Y
v
z2
Y x
3
Y y
3
Y z
3
Y u
x3
Y u
y3
Y u
z3
Y x
4
Y y
4
Y z
4
Y s
x4
Y s
y4
Y w
x4
Y w
y4
Y w
z4
Y v
x4
Y v
y4
Y v
z4
Y y
4
Y u
x5
Y
u
y5
Y u
z5
Y v
x5
Y v
y5
Y v
z5

T
(16)
The motorcycle has only f = 11 degrees of freedom, thus it is necessary to
formulate a set of m = n f = 34 independent constraint equations:
f
j
= 0Y j = 1 F F F m (17)
By imposing the unit length condition to all unit vectors, the following 11
independent constraint equations are obtained:
f
1
= s
1
s
1
1
f
4
= u
2
u
2
1
f
7
= s
4
s
4
1
f
10
= u
5
u
5
1
f
2
= w
1
w
1
1
f
5
= v
2
v
2
1
f
8
= w
4
w
4
1
f
11
= v
5
v
5
1
f
3
= v
1
v
1
1
f
6
= u
3
u
3
1
f
9
= v
4
v
4
1
(17X111)
By imposing the orthogonal conditions to every couple of unit vectors which belong
to the same reference frame, 15 more independent constraint equations are obtained:
f
12
= s
1
w
1
f
15
= u
2
w
1
f
18
= u
3
v
2
f
12
= s
4
w
4
f
24
= u
5
w
1
f
13
= s
1
v
1
f
16
= v
2
u
2
f
19
= u
3
w
4
f
22
= s
4
v
4
f
25
= v
5
w
1
f
14
= v
1
w
1
f
17
= v
2
w
1
f
20
= v
2
w
4
f
23
= v
4
w
4
f
26
= w
5
v
5
(17X1226)
The remaining 8 constraint equations are the following:
v vector G
1
P
2
must be perpendicular to the f
27
= G
1
P
2
w
1
(17.27)
rear wheel spin axis Y
1
v the magnitude of vector G
1
P
2
must be f
28
= G
1
P
2
G
1
P
2
l
2
f
(17.28)
equal to the swinging arm length l
f
v vector v
5
must be perpendicular to the f
29
= G
1
P
2
v
5
(17.29)
vector G
1
P
2
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 431
v the magnitude of vector P
2
P
3
must be f
30
= P
2
P
3
P
2
P
3
l
2
23
(17.30)
equal to l
23
v vector P
2
P
3
must lie on the X
2
Z
2
plane f
31
= P
2
P
3
w
1
(17.31)
(thus it must be perpendicular to the f
32
= P
2
P
3
v
2
(17.32)
vectors w
1
and v
2
)
v the point R
3
= G
4
l
1
u
3
must lie on the f
33
= P
3
R
3
w
4
(17.33)
steering axis Z
3
(thus it must be perpendicular to vectors f
34
= P
3
R
3
u
3
(17.34)
w
4
and u
3
)
It is worth pointing out that the natural coordinates approach made it possible to obtain
simple constraint equations, which are quadratic with respect to the coordinates.
4.2. Lagrange's Equations
Due to the presence of constraints, the Lagrange's equations become
d
dt
dK
d q
i

dK
dq
i

m
j=1
l
j
df
j
dq
i
Q
i
= 0Y i = 1X X n (18)
where K is the kinetic energy, l
i
are the Lagrange multipliers and Q
i
the generalized
forces.
By coupling the denition of kinetic energy to the transformation matrix notation,
the kinetic energy of ith rigid body is
K
i
=
1
2
_
m

P
2
dm =
1
2
_
m
xY yY zY 1

T
T
i

T
i
xY yY zY 1
T
dm (19)
where xY yY zY 1
T
are the coordinates of point P with respect to frame T
i
. Assuming
that the origin of the reference frame is the center of mass of the body and expanding
the previous equation, one obtains:
T
i
=
1
2
_
m
xY yY xY 1
u
2
i
u
i
w
i
u
i
v
i
u
i


G
i
w
i
u
i
w
2
i
w
i
v
i
w
i


G
i
v
i
u
i
v
i
w
i
v
2
i
v
i


G
i

G
i
u
i

G
i
w
i

G
i
v
i

G
2
i
_

_
_

_
xY yY xY 1
T
dm
=
1
2

G
2
i
_
m
dm
1
2
u
2
i
_
m
x
2
dm
1
2
w
2
i
_
m
y
2
dm
1
2
v
2
i
_
m
z
2
dm
u
i
w
i
_
m
xy dm u
i
v
i
_
m
xz dm w
i
v
i
_
m
yz dm
u
i


G
i
_
m
x dm v
i


G
i
_
m
y dm w
i


G
i
_
m
z dm
432 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
By substituting the integral terms in the previous equation with moments and products
of inertia with respect to the center of mass, the kinetic energy of each rigid body can
be calculated as a function of the elements of transformation matrix T
i
, as follows
K
i
=
1
2
m
i

G
2
i

1
4
I
xYi
u
2
i
w
2
i
v
2
i
_ _

1
4
I
yYi
u
2
i
w
2
i
v
2
i
_ _

1
4
I
zYi
u
2
i
w
2
i
v
2
i
_ _
C
xzYi
u
i
v
i
C
xyYi
u
i
w
i
C
yzYi
w
i
v
i
(20)
If the body center of mass does not coincide with the origin of the reference frame, it
is necessary to replace

G
i
= x
i
Y y
i
Y z
i
Y 1
T
with

G
i
=

T
i
G
xi
Y G
yi
Y G
zi
Y 1
T
in the
previous equation. Thus, the kinetic energy of the whole system is:
K =
1
2
m
1

G
2
1

1
2
I
y1
s
2
1
w
2
1
v
2
1


y
1
(s
1
v
1
s
1
v
1
)

y
2
1
_ _

1
2
I
d1
w
2
1

1
2
m
2

G
2
2

1
4
I
x2
u
2
2
w
2
1
v
2
2
_ _

1
4
I
y2
u
2
2
w
2
1
v
2
2
_ _

1
4
I
z2
u
2
2
w
2
2
v
2
2
_ _
C
xz2
u
2
v
2
C
xy2
u
2
w
2
C
yz2
w
2
v
2

1
2
m
3

G
2
3

1
4
I
x3
u
2
3
w
2
4
v
2
3
_ _

1
4
I
y3
u
2
3
w
2
4
v
2
3
_ _

1
4
I
z3
u
2
3
w
2
4
v
2
3
_ _
C
xz3
u
3
v
3
C
xy3
u
3
w
4
C
yz3
w
4
v
3

1
2
m
4

G
2
4

1
2
I
y4
s
2
4
w
2
4
v
2
4


y
4
s
4
v
4
s
4
v
4
( )

y
2
4
_ _

1
2
I
d4
w
2
4

1
2
m
5

G
2
5

1
4
I
x5
u
2
5
w
2
1
v
2
5
_ _

1
4
I
y5
u
2
5
w
2
1
v
2
5
_ _

1
4
I
z5
u
2
5
w
2
1
v
2
5
_ _
C
xz5
u
5
v
5
C
xy5
u
5
w
1
C
yz5
w
1
v
5

1
2
m
6

G
2
6

1
4
I
x6
u
2
3
w
2
4
v
2
3
_ _

1
4
I
y6
u
2
3
w
2
4
v
2
3
_ _

1
4
I
z6
u
2
3
w
2
4
v
2
3
_ _
C
xz6
u
3
v
3
C
xy6
u
3
w
4
C
yz6
w
4
v
3
(21)
where the terms relative to wheels (i = 1 and i = 4) are slightly different from the
terms relative to other bodies because of the axial symmetric structure of the wheels
(I
xYi
= I
zYi
= I
dYi
and C
xzYi
= C
yzYi
= C
xyYi
= 0) and because spin velocity

y
1
Y

y
4
has
been used.
The generalized forces expression can be obtained from the virtual work dW of the
forces acting on the vehicle
dW =

m
i=1
Q
i
dq
i
(22)
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 433
In order to determine virtual works, it is necessary to calculate the virtual rotation dY
i
of each rigid body with respect to its reference frame T
i
. By extending the concept of
angular velocity matrix [2] to virtual rotation matrix dY = T
T
dT and by extracting
the components of virtual rotation from dY, the following virtual rotation operator
can be dened:
dY T
i
( ) = v
i
dw
i
Y u
i
dv
i
Y w
i
du
i
Y 0
T
(23)
Virtual work contains the following terms:
dW = dW
g
dW
S
dW
A
dW
t
dW
B
dW
tYF
dW
tYT
dW
P
(24)
v The virtual work due to the gravity force:
dW
g
=

6
i=1
m
i
g dG
i
(24X1)
where g = 0Y 0Y gY 1
T
is the gravity acceleration.
v The virtual work due to front suspension force F
Sf
, which acts between the front
assembly and front wheel, and virtual work due to rear suspension force F
Sr
, which
acts between the rear assembly and swinging arm:
dW
s
= F
Sf
v
2
(dP
3
dR
3
) t
s
F
Sr
c
y
dY T
2
( ) dY T
5
( ) [ [ (24X2)
where t
s
= dy
r
adz
r
is the velocity coefcient between spring deection z
r
and arm
rotation y
r
.
v The virtual work due to drag, side and lift aerodynamics forces F
A
=
T
w1
F
D
Y F
S
Y F
L
Y 0
T
, which are applied on point C
A
= T
2
X
CA
Y 0Y Z
CA
Y 1
T
:
dW
A
= F
A
dC
A
(24X3)
v The virtual work due to rider steering torque t and steer damper torque t
D
, which
are applied between the rear and front assembly:
dW
t
= t t
D
( )c
z
dY T
3
( ) dY T
2
( ) [ [ (24X4)
v The virtual work due to rear brake torque M
Br
, which acts between the rear wheel
and swinging arm, and the virtual work due to front brake torque M
Bf
, which acts
between the front wheel and front unsprung mass:
dW
B
= M
Br
c
y
dY T
1
( ) dY T
5
( ) [ [ M
Bf
c
y
dY T
4
( ) dY T
6
( ) [ [ (24X5)
v The virtual work due to rear tire force F
T1
= T
/
1
S
1
Y F
1
Y N
1
Y 0
T
, which is applied
on rear contact point C
1
= T
w1
0Y y
c1
Y z
c1
Y 1
T
, and the virtual work due to front tire
force F
T4
= T
/
4
S
4
Y F
4
Y N
4
Y 0
T
, which is applied on front contact point C
4
=
T
w4
0Y y
c4
Y z
c4
Y 1
T
:
dW
tYF
= F
T1
dG
1
G
1
C
1
F
T1
T
1
dY T
1
( )F
T4
dG
4
G
4
C
4
F
T4
T
4
dY T
4
( )
(24X6)
434 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
v The virtual work due to rear tire torque M
T1
= T
/
1
0Y M
y1
Y M
z1
Y 0
T
and front tire
torque M
T4
= T
/
4
0Y M
y4
Y M
z4
Y 0
T
:
dW
tYM
= M
T1
T
1
dY T
1
( ) M
T4
T
4
dY T
4
( ) (24X7)
v The virtual work due to the propulsive torque, which is transmitted from the drive
sprocket to the wheel by means of the chain. As shown in Figure 5, the drive
sprocket center is R = T
2
R
X
Y 0Y R
Z
Y 1
T
, whereas the chain angles are:
y
c1
= arctan
G
1
R s
1
G
1
R v
1
_ _
arcsin
r
c
r
p
G
1
R [ [
_ _
y
c2
= arctan
G
1
R u
2
G
1
R v
2
_ _
arcsin
r
c
r
p
G
1
R [ [
_ _
The chain tension F
C
= T
1
T
c
sin(y
c1
)Y 0Y T
c
cos(y
c1
)Y 0
T
acts between point
P
7
= T
1
r
c
cos(y
c1
)Y 0Y r
c
sin(y
c1
)Y 1
T
and point P
8
= T
2
R
X
r
p
cos(y
c2
)Y 0Y R
Z

_
r
p
sin(y
c2
)Y 1
T
, thus the virtual work is
dW
p
= F
c
dP
7
dP
8
( ) T
c
r
c
dy
1
(24X8)
Explicit Lagrange's equations are not shown because of their large number, while
their compact form is the following:
F qY qY  qY kY t ( ) = M q

M q F
T
k Q = 0 (25)
where Mis the mass matrix, F is the Jacobian matrix of constraint equations (17), k is
the vector of Lagrange multipliers and Q is the vector of generalized forces. Due to
the natural coordinates approach, the mass matrix is very sparse and has only 9% non-
zero elements; moreover the evaluation of Equation (25) require less than 2,000
multiplications and less than 1,000 additions.
Fig. 5. Geometry of the chain transmission.
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 435
4.3. Tire Equations
As seen in Section 3, tire deformation is described by means of three coordinates,
hence for both the rear and front tires the following six coordinates should be dened:
q
/
= y
c1
Y z
c1
Y x
1
Y y
c4
Y z
c4
Y x
4

T
(26)
The tire behavior must be described by means of as many equations as coordinates.
Equation (8) can be re-written as follows
p
1
= S
slipY1
k
1
Y l
1
Y j
1
Y N
1
( ) S
elasticY1
x
1
Y j
1
( ) = 0
p
2
= S
slipY4
k
4
Y l
4
Y j
4
Y N
4
( ) S
elasticY4
x
4
Y j
4
( ) = 0
p
3
= F
slipY1
k
1
Y l
1
Y j
1
Y N
1
( ) F
elasticY1

rY1
Y
lY1
Y j
1
_ _
= 0
p
4
= F
slipY4
k
4
Y l
4
Y j
4
Y N
4
( ) F
elasticY4

rY4
Y
lY4
Y j
4
_ _
= 0
(27X14)
Equations (3), (4) and (7) make it possible to express slip quantities and tire
deformations as a function of generalized coordinates, whereas camber angles can be
calculated as follows:
j
1
= arcsin w
z1
( )
j
4
= arcsin w
z4
( )
(28)
The remaining equations are obtained by imposing the contact between the tire and
road plane Z = 0, as follows:
p
5
= C
1
( )
z
= z
1
w
z1
y
c1
v
z1
z
c1
= 0
p
6
= C
4
( )
z
= z
4
w
z4
y
c4
v
z4
z
c4
= 0
(27X56)
It is worth pointing out that Equations (27.14) are differential equations because
slip quantities (3) and (4) contain time derivation of coordinates x and x
/
. On the
contrary, Equations (27.56) are algebraic.
4.4. State Space Formulation
Lagrange's Equation (25), constraint Equation (17) and tire Equation (27) form a set
of 85 second order differential-algebraic simultaneous equations (DAEs) of index 3
[15], with the following unknowns: 51 generalized coordinates and 34 Lagrange
multipliers.
In order to obtain a 1 index DAEs problem, algebraic constraint Equation (3)
should be replaced by differential equations using the Baumgarte stabilization method
[16], as follows:
G
/
=

G 28o

G o
2
G (29)
where constant and o are properly chosen.
436 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
The DAEs problems of index 1 can be numerically solved using the DASSL solver
[17], however the transformation of DAEs into a set of ordinary differential equations
(ODEs) makes it possible to increase integration speed. For this purpose, the
Lagrange multipliers are replaced with the following differential expression:
k = t
/
(30)
where constant t
/
is properly chosen. Moreover, tire Equation (27) should be replaced
by the following set of ODEs
p
/
= p
1
Y p
2
Y p
3
Y p
4
Y p
5
t
/
p
5
Y p
6
t
/
p
6

T
(31)
In addition, the 2nd order Lagrange's Equation (25) should be reduced to a 1st order
ODEs. The system is then described by means of the following 2n m 6 = 130
state variables
y = xY vY Y x
/

T
(32)
and the following state space equations
G yY yY t ( ) =
F
v q
G
/
p
/
_

_
_

_
= 0 (33)
Although the number of equations is rather high with respect to the number of degrees
of freedom, each equation is simple and the evaluation of expression (33) require less
than 3,000 multiplications and less than 2,000 additions. These equations have been
implemented in a Fortran code, using the implicit solver DASSL for numerical
integration.
5. COMPARISON BETWEEN COMPUTER SIMULATIONS
AND EXPERIMENTAL MEASUREMENTS
In order to validate the multi-body model, some experimental tests were carried out on
an Aprilia RSV 1000 motorcycle; they were then compared to the simulation results.
The geometrical and inertial characteristics of the motorcycle and the non-linear
elastic and damping characteristics of the suspensions were measured at the
Department of Mechanical Engineering (DIM) at the University of Padua [18, 19].
Tire parameters were also measured with department's equipment [20], whereas the
driver inertia properties were estimated as shown in reference [21]. The charac-
teristics of the motorcycle are given in Appendix and in Figures 10, 11 and 12.
The motorcycle was equipped with a measurement system: roll and yaw rate,
steering angle, spin velocity of both wheels and steering torque were measured and
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 437
stored on a data recorder [19]. Data post-processing made it possible to calculate
vehicle forward speed and roll angle as well.
In order to reproduce the experimental maneuvers by means of numerical
simulations, steering torque t was calculated according to measured steering torque
t
m
and measured roll angle j
m
, as follows:
t = t
m
k
j
j
m
j ( ) (34)
where j is the simulated roll angle and k
j
the control gain. The chain propulsive force
and the front brake torque were calculated based on measured speed u
m
, as follows:
S = m
r
u
m
k
u
u
m
u ( ) [ [
T
c
=
r
1
r
c
S M
Ff
= 0Y S _ 0 (acceleration)
T
c
= 0 M
Ff
= r
4
SY S ` 0 (braking)
_
_
_
(35)
where S is the longitudinal thrust, m
r
the generalized mass, u the simulated speed and k
u
the control gain. Rear brake was not used in either the real or simulated maneuvers.
Figure 6 shows the comparison of the experimental measurements with the
numerical simulation for a lane change maneuver. The lane change width was 3.6 m
and the lane change length was 40 m. It was not possible to measure the trajectory of
the motorcycle, so the experiments were compared with simulations by analyzing
steering torque (Fig. 6a), vehicle speed (Fig. 6b), roll angle (Fig. 6c) and steering
angle (Fig. 6d). The gure shows that at the beginning of the maneuver the rider is
driving straight and increasing speed. When he starts to apply positive steering torque
(point A), the vehicle begins to capsize on the left-hand side. Afterwards, when the
steering torque is zero (point B) the magnitude of roll angle is still increasing; when
the steering torque reaches its minimum (point C), the roll angle is increasing and the
vehicle begins to capsize on the right-hand side. Then, the rider straightens the vehicle
(from point D) and nally decreases the speed.
The agreement between experimental and simulated data is very good: the overall
error (RMS) of steering torque is less than 3% of its peak value, the overall error of
vehicle speed is less than 0.5% of its peak value, the overall error of roll angle is about
the 9% of its peak value and the overall error of steering angle is about 26% of its peak
value. The steering angle has the maximum error, because of some steering oscillations
that are present in the simulation but that were not found in the experimental test.
Figure 7 shows the comparison of a real slalom maneuver with a simulated one,
by representing steering torque (Fig. 7a), vehicle speed (Fig. 7b), roll angle (Fig. 7c)
and steering angle (Fig. 7d). The pylon distance is 14 m and the vehicle speed is about
13.5 m/s. During the slalom maneuver, both roll and steering angles are delayed in
phase from steering torque of about 90

. Once again, the agreement between


experimental and simulated data is very good: the overall error of steering torque is
438 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
F
i
g
.
6
.
L
a
n
e
c
h
a
n
g
e
m
a
n
e
u
v
e
r
:
c
o
m
p
a
r
i
s
o
n
b
e
t
w
e
e
n
e
x
p
e
r
i
m
e
n
t
a
l
m
e
a
s
u
r
e
m
e
n
t
s
a
n
d
n
u
m
e
r
i
c
a
l
s
i
m
u
l
a
t
i
o
n
s
.
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 439
F
i
g
.
7
.
S
l
a
l
o
m
m
a
n
e
u
v
e
r
:
c
o
m
p
a
r
i
s
o
n
b
e
t
w
e
e
n
e
x
p
e
r
i
m
e
n
t
a
l
m
e
a
s
u
r
e
m
e
n
t
s
a
n
d
n
u
m
e
r
i
c
a
l
s
i
m
u
l
a
t
i
o
n
s
.
440 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
F
i
g
.
8
.
L
a
n
e
c
h
a
n
g
e
m
a
n
e
u
v
e
r
:
c
o
m
p
a
r
i
s
o
n
o
f
n
u
m
e
r
i
c
a
l
s
i
m
u
l
a
t
i
o
n
s
c
a
r
r
i
e
d
o
u
t
u
s
i
n
g
d
i
f
f
e
r
e
n
t
m
u
l
t
i
-
b
o
d
y
s
o
f
t
w
a
r
e
.
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 441
less than 10% of its peak value, the overall error of vehicle speed is less than 3% of its
peak value, the overall error of roll angle is about the 15% of its peak value and the
overall error of steering angle is about the 13% of its peak value.
6. COMPARISON OF THE PERFORMANCES OF THE MULTI-BODY MODEL
WITH PERFORMANCE OF MULTI-BODY COMMERCIAL SOFTWARE
In this section simulations carried out using FastBike are compared with simulations
carried out using Dads1 and Visual Nastran1.
The features of Visual Nastran and Dads motorcycle models are about the same as
FastBike. It is worth pointing out that these multi-body software do not have a suitable
tire model, so it was necessary to implement the tire model presented in [14] and [13].
In this model the tire is rigid and has a toroidal shape.
The Figure 8 shows simulations of a lane change maneuver carried out using
different codes. The agreement between the data is excellent, both for the steering
torque (Fig. 8a) and roll angle (Fig. 8b).
Even if commercial software for multi-body analysis greatly reduces the time
needed for modeling systems, the time required for simulation is greater. Figure 9
compares the CPU time needed to carry out 1 s of simulation on a AMD K7 800 MHz
processor. The only code that allows real time simulation is Fast bike, which is about
10 times faster than Dads and about 100 times faster than Visual Nastran.
7. CONCLUSIONS
An original mathematical model of a tire and motorcycle was presented.
Fig. 9. CPU time on a processor AMD 800 MHz.
442 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
The tire model was developed in order to describe tire behavior at a large camber
angle. The shape of the tire and position of the contact point were described in detail.
The model is based on the physical description of tire forces genesis: the sliding of the
contact patch generates tire forces, which produce a deformation of the carcass of the
tire. By taking into account simultaneously both phenomena, an accurate description
of tire properties is obtained. It was demonstrated that this model is equivalent to
relaxation tire models.
The motorcycle multi-body model has eleven degrees of freedom and includes the
main features of a motorcycle, taking into account the non-linear properties of tires
and suspensions. The very good agreement between the numerical simulations and
experimental tests demonstrates the feasibility and correctness of the model.
The equations of motion were developed based on the natural coordinates
approach. This method made it possible to obtain simple equations of motion and
hence high computation efciency was obtained. The comparison of the per-
formances of the FastBike code with the performance of DADS and Visual Nastran
showed that the rst is much faster than the others. In particular, real time simulations
can be carried out using FastBike and it can also be used on a motorcycle simulator.
For the same reason, it can be useful for solving optimization problems.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
The authors would like to thank A. Doria for his suggestion regarding the organization
of the paper and D. Bortoluzzi and N. Ruffo for their contribution during the
experimental tests.
This research was partially supported by funds from the Italian Ministry for
Universities and for Scientic and Technological Research (MURST 40% funds).
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Multi-Body Code. Tire Technology International, March 1999.
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31 (1999), pp. 157181.
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(March 1999), pp. 111116.
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APPENDIX
MOTORCYCLE CHARACTERISTICS
Motorcycle Geometric and Mechanical Properties
m
1
16.2 kg Rear wheel mass
I
a1
0.66 kgm
2
Rear wheel axial inertia
I
d1
0.33 kgm
2
Rear wheel diametrical inertia
m
2
223 kg Rear assembly mass (including rider)
(G
x2
Y G
y2
Y G
z2
) (0.255, 0.000, 0.0202) m Coordinates of rear assembly CoM with
respect to frame T
2
I
x2
Y I
y2
Y I
z2
(24.4, 26.2, 30.3) kgm
2
Rear assembly moments of inertia
C
xz2
Y C
yz2
Y C
xy2
(0.0, 0.0, 0.0) kgm
2
Rear assembly products of inertia
444 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
l
23
0.730 m Distance between rear arm pin and steer
axis
m
3
8.75 kg Front assembly mass
(G
x3
Y G
y3
Y G
z3
) (0.023, 0.000, 0.098) m Coordinates of front assembly CoM with
respect to frame T
3
I
x3
Y I
y3
Y I
z3
(0.29, 0.14, 0.21) kgm
2
Front assembly moments of inertia
C
xz3
Y C
yz3
Y C
xy3
(0.0, 0.0, 0.0) kgm
2
Front assembly products of inertia
10 Nms Damping coefcient of steering damper
m
4
12.0 kg Front wheel mass
I
a4
0.47 kgm
2
Front wheel axial inertia
I
d4
0.22 kgm
2
Front wheel diametric inertia
l
1
0.034 m Front wheel offset
Z
FY0
0.517 m Center of wheel position (with respect to
frame T
3
) when the suspension is
completely extended
l
f
0.535 m Rear arm length
m
5
10.0 m Rear arm mass
Fig. 10. Suspension properties.
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 445
(G
x5
Y G
y5
Y G
z5
) (0.275, 0.000, 0.052) m Coordinates of rear arm CoM with
respect to frame T
5
I
x5
Y I
y5
Y I
z5
(0.20, 0.80, 0.80) kgm
2
Rear arm moments of inertia
y
5,0
.165 rad Rear arm rotation (respect frame T
2
)
when the suspension is completely
extended
z
r
= 0X13526 y
5
0X138 y
2
5
0X036 y
3
5
Relation between spring travel z
r
and
arm rotation y
5
m
6
7.00 kg Unsprung front mass
G
x6
Y G
y6
Y G
z6
(0.029, 0.000, 0.189) m Coordinates of unsprung mass CoM
with respect to frame T
3
I
x6
Y I
y6
Y I
z6
(0.22, 0.18, 0 .07) kgm
2
Unsprung mass moments of inertia
r
p
0.041 m Sprocket radius
r
c
0.104 m Wheel sprocket radius
Fig. 11. Front tire properties.
446 V. COSSALTER AND R. LOT
(a
p
Y b
p
) (0.080, 0.030) m XZ coordinates of sprocket center with
respect to frame T
2
C
D
A 0.28 Ns
2
/m
2
Drag force coefcient (F
D
= C
D
A u
2
)
Global Properties
m 276.8 kg Total mass
p 1.421 m Wheel base
e 0.43 rad Castor angle
h 0.636 m Height of the center of mass
b 0.675 m Horizontal position of the center
(with respect to the rear wheel)
Fig. 12. Rear tire properties.
A MOTORCYCLE MULTI-BODY MODEL 447