Ackermann steering is a double-pivoting steering system where
the outer ends of the steering arms are bent slightly inward
so that when the vehicle is making a turn, the inside wheel
will turn at a greater angle than the outer wheel. This solves
the problem of wheels on the inside and outside of a turn
needing to trace out circles of different radius.
Without Ackermann steering one or both of the tires will be
forced to scrub the ground sideways a small amout during cornering.
Modern cars do not use pure Ackermann steering, partly because
it ignores important dynamic and compliant effects, but the
principle is sound for low speed manoeuvres. Some race cars
use reverse Ackermann geometry to compensate for the large
difference in slip angle between the inner and outer front
tires while cornering at high speed. The use of such geometry
helps reduce tire temperatures during high-speed cornering
but compromises performance in low speed manoeuvres.
Ackermann steering was invented by the Anglo-German inventor
Rudolph Ackermann (17641834) in 1810 for horse drawn
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