Electric Power Steering (EPS) is favored over hydraulic power steering in most new vehicles. Eliminating the power steering pump can reduce weight and improve fuel economy. EPS also offers greater handling and steering feel while improving vehicle safety by adapting the steering torque to the vehicle's speed and providing active torque in critical driving situations.
The central electronic elements of today's electric power steering systems are modern 16- and 32-bit MCUs designed for safety-critical applications. Freescale's 16-bit and Qorivva 32-bit single and dual-core MCU provide enhanced computing power and specialized peripherals for complex electric motor control functions. Integrated power supply solutions are also important elements of a power steering control unit. They provide connectivity to automotive busses, such as CAN and LIN. For MOSFET power stages control, integrated pre-drivers are typically used to interface with the MCU directly or via SPI.