Ducati is working on active suspension for its road and race bikes.
The firm’s top race engineers Claudio Domenicali and Filippo Preziosi have applied for a patent on the unique system, and MCN has obtained the details of how it works.
You can read all about Ducati’s plans for active suspension in the new MCN, out May 1, but here’s our first impressions:
*The new system –developed for Troy Bayliss’s superbike – doesn’t radically alter the current set-up on a 998, but builds on it.
*A high-speed oil pump with pressurised hydraulics would replace the thread-adjustable rod which controls the ride-height of the bike.
*Sensors would feed back the amount of braking force applied, the speed and angle of the bike and allow the computer to decide how to alter the rear ride height.
*The active suspension is designed at this stage purely as an aid to heavy, straight-line braking. Under extreme use, the piston retracts and lowers the height of the rear end. This then lowers the centre of gravity and allows more braking to be applied before the bike starts to roll forward on to the front wheel.
*The first time we see the design in the flesh is likely to be in the high-profile four-stroke MotoGP bike, which is due to make its race debut next year.