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Graduate courses

Departments' graduate courses for PhD-students.


Syllabus for

Academic year
TME102 - Vehicle motion and control  
Fordonsrörelse och reglering
Syllabus adopted 2021-02-17 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPMOB
7,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Pass with distinction (5), Pass with credit (4), Pass (3), Fail
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Main field of study: Automation and Mechatronics Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Engineering Physics

Course round 1

Teaching language: English
Application code: 89117
Open for exchange students: Yes
Block schedule: B
Maximum participants: 40

Module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0111 Examination, part A 4,5 c Grading: TH   4,5 c   30 May 2022 am J,  08 Oct 2021 am J   18 Aug 2022 am J
0211 Project, part B 3,0 c Grading: TH   3,0 c    

In programs

MPMOB MOBILITY ENGINEERING, MSC PROGR, Year 1 (compulsory elective)


Mats Jonasson

  Go to Course Homepage


General entry requirements for Master's level (second cycle)
Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling the requirements above.

Specific entry requirements

English 6 (or by other approved means with the equivalent proficiency level)
Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling the requirements above.

Course specific prerequisites

MMF062 Vehicle dynamics and/or MMA092 Rigid body dynamics and ERE033 Control theory or similar


In this course the focus is put on the understanding of the coupled planar dynamics of road vehicles during steering and braking (or driving) including various non-linear effects from tires, suspension etcetera.

Learning outcomes (after completion of the course the student should be able to)

  • Identify and discuss factors (e.g. load transfer) that cause interactions between the different vehicle subsystems, e.g. braking and steering. 
  • Develop and implement computer models of vehicle dynamics behavior and critically analyze results from numerical simulations. 
  • Identify and mathematically characterize linear and nonlinear tire behavior and the influence of this behavior on vehicle performance using Handling Diagram. 
  • Identify suspension and tire characteristics influencing vehicle chassis performance and stability in both low and high-speed manoeuvres, under both steady-state and transient manoeuvres, with the ability to mathematically justify how changes in vehicle parameters (e.g. mass or weight distribution) can be stabilizing or destabilizing. 
  • Understand how to extend the mathematical analysis of the passenger car to heavy vehicles. 
  • Understand and characterize the change in vehicle performance and vehicle/roadway interaction due to automated subsystems such as e.g. ABS, ESC and Rear Wheel Steering. 
  • Construct specifications for vehicle control systems.
The course contributes to the United Nations sustainable development goals regarding Sustainable cities and communities samhällenssss(SDG 13) and Climate action (SDG 11) in the sense that vehicle dynamics and control are important aspects both for vehicle safety and energy efficiency.


The mathematics and mechanics concepts and notations used in the course are reviewed. The tire and vehicle models suitable for analysing the coupled dynamics during steering and braking or driving are developed and then used to evaluate handling performance in various manoeuvres. Some aspects about vehicle stability and the principles, basic implementation and specifications for automated vehicle control systems are included. At the end the challenges posed by heavy vehicles are discussed but not covered in detail. 

Preliminaries (covered during the course)
Vehicle Dynamics Terminology & Notation 
Fundamental Vehicle Dynamics 
Relative Planar Motion, Rigid Body Kinematics & Dynamics
Linearization, Linear Analysis (Eigenvalues, Transfer Functions, Bode Plots) 
Linear and Non-Linear Stability Concepts 
Basic Signal Processing and Control Theory 

Vehicle Modeling for Planar Dynamics
Tire Properties Influence on Vehicle Dynamics 
Tire Forces/Moments & Kinematics 
Modified SAE Tire Axes & Terminology 
Introduction to Tire Modeling (Magic Formula) 
Definition of Effective Tire & Axle Characteristics 
The Planar Rigid One Track Model (Bicycle Model) 
Suspension and Steering Effects 
The Planar Two Track Model Vehicle 
Model Block Diagram 

Tire Modeling
Basic Tire Modeling Consideration 
Brush Tire Model 
Steady State Lateral/Longitudinal Slip Force Generation 
Interaction between Lateral Slip and Longitudinal Slip (Combined Slip) 
Transient Tire Forces 
Review of Industry Standard Tire Models (Magic Formula, etc) 

Vehicle Handling and Stability
Steady State Cornering Stability Analysis 
Handling Diagram 
Quasi Steady State Cornering 
Straight Line Braking Stability Analysis 
Transient Cornering (Step Steer, Throttle On/Off) 
Dynamic Cornering (Double Lane Change) 
Principles for ABS and ESC

Heavy Vehicles 
Steady State Cornering of Single Unit Heavy Trucks 
Effect of Tandem Axles and Dual Tires 
Equivalent Wheelbase Handling Diagram of Complex Vehicles 
V-Handling & R-Handling Curves 
Steady State Cornering of a Tractor-Semitrailer 
Tractor Jackknife & Trailer Swing 

Vehicle Stability Control
Vehicle Parameters and States Estimation 
Road and Basic Driver Models Principles 
Basic Powertrain Modeling 
Brake System Modeling (Saturation and Delays) 
Basic Implementation and Specifications for Vehicle Control Systems, e.g.: 
- Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) 
- Electronic Stability Control (ESC)


  • Lectures 
  • Problem solving sessions 
  • Assignments and/or Hand-ins


  • Jacobson, B., et al, Vehicle Dynamics Compendium, 2020.
  • Rajamani, R., Vehicle Dynamics and Control, Springer Verlag, 2012.
  • Pacejka, H.B., Tyre and Vehicle Dynamics, 2002. 
  • Abe M., Vehicle Handling Dynamics, 2009. 
  • Kiencke, U. and Nielsen, L., Automotive Control Systems, 2005
  • Matlab/Simulink Users Guide, Mathworks Inc

Examination including compulsory elements

  • Marked assignment reports and/or hand-ins
  • Graded examination with problem solving and descriptive questions

The course examiner may assess individual students in other ways than what is stated above if there are special reasons for doing so, for example if a student has a decision from Chalmers on educational support due to disability.

Page manager Published: Thu 04 Feb 2021.