july2023 - 10

" There is some deceleration tuning that occurs
within the stability control system to compensate
for differences in the foundation brake system, so
OnGuard can request specific amounts of deceleration,
and the stability control system does the
rest, " said Chuck Brodie, field service team leader,
CV Solutions, ZF. " After that, we have to work
with the engine controller so that we can derate
it during CMS events or control the torque when
ACC needs to adjust for a slower lead vehicle. "
AEBs work similarly with the transmission, allowing
the former to recognize when the latter shifts so
it can compensate for neutral coast features.
Beyond these mechanical solutions, TJ Thomas,
director of marketing and customer solutions at
Bendix, did not recommend technicians test AEB
functionality without the use of specialized testing
equipment and a trained driver.
" Beyond that, drivers and technicians should
follow the information on the vehicle dash or
ACom PRO for further diagnosing, troubleshooting,
or calibrating, " Thomas advised, referencing
Bendix's diagnostic software.
However, fleets utilizing AEBs have also noted
that maintaining these systems requires extra
care for a vehicle's electrical connections.
" It's critical to focus on wiring integrity and
connections, " Ryder's Moore emphasized. " Pay
close attention to wiring connectors, and protect
them from corrosion and damage. "
Limitations and concerns
While AEBs have come a long way and the industry
generally agrees that they work well, problems
have arisen. In one recent example, 18 Freightliner
Cascadia (MY 2017-2022) trucks equipped with
Detroit Assurance experienced sudden, unexpected
stops. This led to a NHTSA investigation
on these " false positive events. " During the Office
of Defects Investigation, NHTSA duplicated the
unintended braking event during a " steel trench
plate " scenario.
When asked for comment, a Daimler spokesper»
ZF's next-gen OnGuardMAX AEB system
integrates several camera features into one
device to avoid cluttering the windshield
without losing any of its safety features.
AEBs and maintenance
Since this technology works with so many other
systems in a truck, any technician working on
or servicing AEBs must be prepared to use a
holistic maintenance approach that takes this
interconnectivity into account. However, many
AEB providers have said that recalibrating and
diagnosing these systems is usually not done by
a technician, but by the system itself.
" For OnGuard, a simple road test is all that
is needed to make sure everything is working
correctly, " Brodie affirmed. " If there are any issues,
the system sets fault codes and lets [technicians]
know via the HMI. "
During a public road test, Brodie explained,
OnGuard attunes itself to the traffic and roadside
objects, aligning the radar.
Detroit Assurance works similarly, explained
Len Copeland, Detroit Products marketing
manager, Daimler Truck North America. During
a technician road test, Copeland said that Detroit
Assurance is " learning its location on the vehicle
relative to the camera on the radar " in a calibration
process that " happens almost automatically. "
If the road test fails, then the technician needs
to inspect the radar bracket, which may be bent
and need repairs, or the system cameras, which
may be blocked. " Watch where people might naturally
place their foot when tilting a hood so as to
not damage the module, " Ryder's Moore warned.
" Also ensure [that the radar] brackets are sturdy
and not susceptible to vibration. "
10 Fleet Maintenance | July 2023
son stated that they are committed to the safety
potential of AEBs and share the same mission as
NHTSA, and they will continue to work with the
agency to review AEB technology and upcoming
regulations and tests. The probe could involve
up to 250,000 AEB-equipped Cascadias (MY
If this were the only case of driver difficulties
with AEBs, 18 Freightliners might not make for
much news. MVTS has experienced similar situations
while testing vehicles with AEBs, but the
make and model of both were not disclosed for
legal reasons.
" We've had situations where the system would
malfunction randomly and lock the brakes so bad
that it actually flat-spotted the steer tires, " MVTS's
Bear said. " When we first got this vehicle, it shook
a lot. And then when we switched the tires, it got
better. But then this braking issue happened, and
it flat-spotted the second set of tires, and we realized
what had happened to the first set. "
Incidents like these have done nothing to engender
driver confidence in AEBs, a sentiment that
was echoed at Shell Rotella's SuperRigs 2023 truck
show held in Gillette, Wyoming, this past June.
" I'm not a fan of [AEBs], " said Nichole Cheek,
a driver for North Country Logistics. " For one, I
think it's dangerous. If an emergency or something
like that happens and you can't get the truck off
the road, then what? You're impeding traffic, you
can cause a wreck, or somebody can get injured. "
Barry Kasdorf of Jade Transportation worried
that sensors trumping a driver's skills could lead
to disaster as well.
" If you went into a corner, [and the system]
thought you're going too fast, it would throw the
brakes on, " Kasdorf explained. " I've never had it
happen in adverse weather with snow and ice, but
I don't think you'd want that. It would throw you
into a skid. "
The future of automatic
emergency braking
Despite occasional imperfections, manufacturers
are still working hard to improve AEB technology
and incorporate it into new applications. These
improvements may come in the form of increasing
the accuracy of sensors and cameras.
" Detection range, picture resolution, and night
vision may be improved with better hardware and
sensor quality, " said Dirk Wohltmann, director of
engineering for the Americas, Commercial Vehicle
Solutions, ZF. " New processor technology can also
increase update rates, and increased storage capacity
helps to store and process better quality pictures. "
Brett Suma, CEO and founder of Loadsmith,
noted that AEB technology serves as a safety
redundancy for people, especially when it comes
to driving in severe weather. Suma explained that
a human driver might decide to get on the road
where a driverless truck might choose to stay put.
AEBs could help mitgate the human's risky choice.
" For the people that have a hesitancy about it,
every day technology gets better, every day sensors
get better, " Suma added.
These extra precautions also become a failsafe
for AVs, a necessity when the ultimate goal is to
remove the human fallibility from commercial
vehicles entirely. Someday, AVs may not need a
last line of defense.
" Eventually, if we can show that [AEB] is not
needed and the federal government agrees and
grants exemption, we wouldn't need to put them
on, " Kodiak CTO Andreas Wendel said. " But at the
moment, they do provide a really good baseline. "
This means that Kodiak's Kenworth T-680s
equipped with Bendix Wingman Fusion and
Kodiak Driver work within the same parameters
that a human driver would. And part of the reason
AVs are likely to keep this baseline is because AEB
technology has already been thoroughly tested.
" They have also been tested for many miles, and
there's good data behind them, " Wendel explained.
" Safety is our number one priority, so having these
systems on at the moment doesn't hurt us. It helps
us overall, and that's why we'll have them on for
the foreseeable future. "
As for AEB systems in general?
" Imagine a situation where a human driver fails
to take action, then the automated emergency
braking system actually jumps in and corrects
for that mistake, " Wendel said. " If you look at it
from a safety envelope, it is great if even in 10%
of these situations, the AEB system saves the day.
That is a net positive. "
Every fleet will need to come to its own conclusions
on whether AEBs are right for them and their
drivers. But it seems likely that the number of AEB
systems in the commercial vehicle market will
only continue to grow, as the technology's life-saving
potential is well worth stumbling over a few
speedbumps along the way.
For related content go to


Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of july2023

Hitched Up – Using AI without losing what's important to your business
Equipment – AEB adoption speeds ahead
In The Bay – Bright ideas to speed up lighting and electrical repairs
Shop Operations – Battle of the bulging budget
Lubrication – Greasing: Manual or auto?
APUS – APU innovations take heat off fleets
Diagnostics – Don't distress; de-stress your diagnostic process
Technology & Maintenance Council Annual Meeting & Skills Contest
Fleet Parts & Components
Tools & Equipment
Product Spotlight: Wheels and brakes
july2023 - 1
july2023 - 2
july2023 - 3
july2023 - 4
july2023 - 5
july2023 - Hitched Up – Using AI without losing what's important to your business
july2023 - 7
july2023 - Equipment – AEB adoption speeds ahead
july2023 - 9
july2023 - 10
july2023 - 11
july2023 - In The Bay – Bright ideas to speed up lighting and electrical repairs
july2023 - 13
july2023 - 14
july2023 - 15
july2023 - 16
july2023 - 17
july2023 - Shop Operations – Battle of the bulging budget
july2023 - 19
july2023 - 20
july2023 - 21
july2023 - Lubrication – Greasing: Manual or auto?
july2023 - 23
july2023 - APUS – APU innovations take heat off fleets
july2023 - 25
july2023 - Diagnostics – Don't distress; de-stress your diagnostic process
july2023 - 27
july2023 - Technology & Maintenance Council Annual Meeting & Skills Contest
july2023 - 29
july2023 - 30
july2023 - 31
july2023 - 32
july2023 - 33
july2023 - 34
july2023 - 35
july2023 - 36
july2023 - 37
july2023 - Fleet Parts & Components
july2023 - 39
july2023 - Tools & Equipment
july2023 - 41
july2023 - Product Spotlight: Wheels and brakes
july2023 - 43
july2023 - 44