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B Tech Seminar

Submitted in partial fulfilment for the award of the degree of Bachelor of

Technology in Mechanical Engineering



Under the guidance of


Department of mechanical engineering

Kohinoor, Thenhipalam P.O, Malappuram – 673636, India

This is to certify that the seminar entitled “SELF BALANCING

BICYCLE” is a bonafide record of the seminar presentation done by
AKSHAY VENUGOPAL (Roll No.IEANEME007), under my supervision and
guidance, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of Degree of
Bachelor of Technology in Mechanical Engineering from Calicut University
Institute of Engineering and Technology for the year 2017

Asst. Professor
Dept. of Mechanical Engineering

Dept. of Mechanical Engineering

I am very thankful to Mr. PRIYESH .K, (Assistant Professor, ME Dept.

CUIET) for his careful guidance, support and valuable suggestions which
improved the quality of the work and shaped it into its existing form.

I would like to thank Mr. KISHOR KAMAL, Head of the Mechanical

Engineering Department, CUIET Kohinoor for providing the facilities and the
right atmosphere for doing this work.

I express my gratitude towards other staff members of our department for

their advices and encouragement. I appreciate the service of the management and
the staff of the college.

I give hearty thanks to my friends and family, especially for their support
and inspiration. Above all, I am indebted to the Almighty for granting his
blessings through each stage of my work.


Balancing any two wheeled vehicle is always a challenging task for human
and robots both form long time. Learning a bicycle driving is long time process
and goes through building knowledge base for parameter decision making while
balancing robots. The Automatic Balancing bicycle will employ a control system
to keep itself from falling over while in motion, and be propelled by a motor. This
aim of proposed system was to build a two-inline-wheel bicycle prototype capable
of balancing itself using a reaction wheel. This robotic bicycle is able to drive and
also come to a complete stop without losing its balance. In order to maintain
balancing, the robot reads sensor input to detect tilt angle and correctly reacts to
maintain a steady vertical position. Sensor data is fed into a control system which
outputs a balancing torque to a motor spinning the reaction wheel. The
requirements include that the bicycle should be capable of accelerating, driving in
a straight line and stopping without falling.

Chapter No TITLE Page no.

List of Abbreviations ii
List of Symbols iii
List of Figures iv

1.1 Passive balance systems 2
1.1.1 Training wheels 2
1.1.2 Gyrowheel 3
1.2 Active balance system 4
1.2.1 Gyro stabilized mono rail 4
1.2.2 Gyrover 5
1.2.3 Ghostrider 6
1.2.4 Murata boy 7
3.1 Angular velocity 12
3.2 Angular acceleration 13
3.3 Gyroscopic torque 15
5.1 Overview 22
5.2 Control Overview 22
5.2.1 Micro controller unit 23
5.2.2 Angle sensor 24
5.2.3 Actuator unit 25
6.1 Conclusion 27
6.2 Future scope 27

List of Abbreviations

ADC - Analog to Digital Converter

CMG - Control Momentum Gyroscope
DARPA - Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
DC - Direct Current
IMU - Inertia Measurement Unit
PID - Proportional Integral And Derivative
PWM - Pulse Width Modulation

List of Symbols

A - Acceleration
α - Angular acceleration
ω - Angular velocity
θ - Deflection angle of the flywheel around its gimbal pivot
H - Height of the bicycle's center of gravity
I - Moment of inertia
Ф - Tilt angle of the bicycle
T - Torque
W - Weight of bicycle

List of Figures

Figure No Title Page No.

1.1 Inverted pendulum example 2
1.2 Polygon of Stability with training wheels 3
1.3 Gyrobike's Gyrowheel attached to a 4
standard bicycle.
1.4 The gyro-stabilized monorail travels 5
above the track
1.5 The Gyrover uses it's chassis as a wheel. 6
1.6 The Ghostrider motorcycle 7
1.7 Murata boy 8
3.1 Angular velocity 13
3.2 Angular acceleration 14
3.3 Gyroscopic torque 15
4.1 Single axis CMG 18
4.2 Balancing of bicycle using gyroscopic 19
precession torque generated by CMG
4.3 Rotation axis of fly wheel gimbal 20
4.4 Variable used in representing motion of 20
the system
5.1 System block 23
5.2 ATMega16 functions 24
5.3 ATMega16 24
5.4 Triple axis accelerometer ADXL335 25
6.1 C-1 Motor bike concept vehicle 28


Bicycles are a common form of exercise, recreation and transportation

used by billions. They can also serve to provide physical therapy, as they are a
low impact form of exercise that can train balance, strength, stamina and
coordination. Though one may consider riding a bicycle to be a fairly simple task,
this is not the case for many people. This includes young children, adults who
have never learned to ride a bicycle, injured people, or people suffering from
developmental or cognitive disabilities. A system that could provide balancing
assistance to a bicycle rider without otherwise affecting the experience of riding a
bicycle could provide great benefit to these groups of individuals. Such a system
could be used both as a teaching tool, and as a physically theraputic device.

This problem of balancing a bicycle is analogous to what is known as the

'inverted pendulum' problem. An inverted pendulum is a pendulum which has its
mass above its pivot (figure 1.1). The pendulum can be anything forms a simple
mass and rod, to a full system. While a normal pendulum is stable, an inverted
pendulum is inherently unstable, and must be actively balanced to remain upright
[1]. In the case of a bicycle, the bicycle is a rigid body which can rotate around its
contact point with the ground. Although a bicycle motion has multiple degrees of
freedom, the particular type of motion which this project aims to stabilize is this
tilt angle around the point of contact with the ground relative to the direction of

There are many solutions to the inverted pendulum project that already
exist, some of which provide complete stabilization of a system, others of which
dampen the motion of the system enough to allow for human correction of any
deviation in tilt angle. These solutions can be broken into two groups. one can be

considered Passive Balance Systems, and Active Balance Systems. An Active
Balance System is defined as a system which actively senses the tilt angle of the
system and provides a corrective force based on the tilt angle to stabilize the
system, whereas a Passive Balance System simply dampens or mechanically
limits the motion of the system without any utilization of a calculated tilt angle.
Active balance systems may either provide complete stabilization for a system or
dampen the motion of the system. Passive Balance Systems can only dampen the
motion of the system.

Fig 1.1 : Inverted pendulum example

1.1 Passive Balance Systems

1.1.1 Training Wheels

Training wheels are the most common form of stabilization, passive or

active, for a bicycle. Given the principle that a system is stable if an imaginary
line drawn from its center of gravity along the direction of gravity intersects with
the convex polygon formed by all points of contact with the ground. Training
wheels work by significantly increasing the width of this polygon, shown in figure
1.2. Training wheels have several strengths as a solution to stabilizing a bicycle.
They are very inexpensive, easy to install, and provide acceptable stability as long
as the combined center of gravity of the bicycle and the rider do not extend past
the width of the training wheels. They also do not require any power to operate.
However training wheels are not without their shortcomings. They are for the
most part not adjustable, and while they allow a rider to learn some of the skills
needed to ride a two wheeled bicycle, there is no mechanism for the user to

become gradually less dependent on the training wheels over time; they are either
attached to the bicycle or they are not. The other major disadvantage of training
wheels is that they do not provide stability under all normal use conditions. Any
situation in which the rider's center of gravity extends beyond the width of the
training wheels will result in a failure (the rider falls over), this can happen during
a sharp turn or when traveling over uneven surfaces. These can be considered
normal use cases for a bicycle.

Fig 1.2 : Polygon of Stability with training wheels.

1.1.2 Gyrowheel

Gyrobike’s Gyrowheel is a quite novel approach to passive stabilization of

a bicycle. The Gyrowheel wheel is a proprietary system in which the front wheel
of a bicycle is replaced by a patented wheel containing an embedded gyroscopic
wheel and battery. This replacement can be seen in figure 1.3. Because a
gyroscope resists angular motion other than around its spin axis due to the
principles of momentum conservation and gyroscopic precession, the Gyrowheel
provides passive stability to the bicycle by damping the motion of the bicycle as it
tilts away from the vertical axis. The Gyrowheel has several strengths. Like
training wheels it is relatively easy to install on a bicycle. The Gyrowheel comes
with varying stability settings; the speed of the embedded gyroscope can be

adjusted by the user, which allows for a gradual transition from dependence on the
stability aid, to the ability to ride a standard two wheeled bicycle, making the
Gyrowheel an effective teaching tool. The Gyrowheel has several shortcomings as
well. Because it is a powered system, the Gyrowheel can only be operated
continuously for a finite amount of time before the battery needs to be recharged.
The Gyrowheel also alters the experience of riding a bicycle in ways other than
improving stability due to the fact that the gyroscope also resists angular motion
around the vertical axis, and as such requires more force by the rider to turn the
handlebars of the bicycle which may not be ideal for a disabled person or a small
child. The Gyrowheel also dampens angular motion towards the vertical axis as
well as away from it, therefore there is a tradeoff between the increased reaction
time given to the user to right the bicycle as it tilts away from the vertical axis and
the increased effort required to right the bicycle once it tilts away from the vertical

Fig 1.3 : Gyrobike's Gyrowheel attached to a standard bicycle.

1.2 Active Balance Systems

1.2.1 Gyro-Stabilized Monorail

The Gyro-Stabilized Monorail was a prototype system designed to

stabilize a monorail with a center of gravity above the track, rather than below, as
shown in figure 1.4. The system made use of a powered gyroscopic flywheel with
a horizontal spin axis that was free to rotate around the vertical axis (figure 1.4).

The system causes torque-induced precession of the gyroscope by rotating the fly
wheel around it's vertical axis using a motor. Since a spinning gyroscope resists
this motion, the reaction torque on the actuating motor, which is fixed to the
monorail car, causes the entire car to rotate around the axis of the monorail track.
Thus actuation of the flywheel can be used to stabilize the entire system.

Fig 1.4 : The gyro-stabilized monorail travels above the track

1.2.2 Gyrover

The Gyrover is a single wheeled system that is statically unstable, but

dynamically stable [2]. The system is non-holonomic due to its inability to move
sideways. The entire system is contained within the wheel itself, which serves as
the chassis for the system (figure 1.5). The control system for the Gyrover is
suspended inside the chassis and is free to rotate around the spin axis of the wheel.
The control system consists of 3 motors, 1 which spins a flywheel to impart
dynamic stability on the system, a second motor which rotates the flywheel and
thus controls the tilt angle of the chassis, and a third motor which directly drives
the chassis. By controlling the tilt angle of the Gyrover the turning radius of the
system can also be controlled to allow for steering.

Fig 1.5 : The Gyrover uses it's chasis as a wheel.

1.2.3 Ghostrider

Developed for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's

(DARPA) Grand Challenge, an autonomous vehicle competition sponsored by the
Department of Defense, the Ghostrider robot is a fully autonomous riderless
motorcycle. The Ghostrider makes use of stereo video image processing and GPS
navigation. To remain upright, the Ghost Rider uses a 6 axis gyroscope to detect
it's orientation in space as well as to calculate it's angular velocity acceleration.
The gyroscope provides readings for the angular position and velocity of the roll,
pitch, and yaw. Using this information, the Ghostrider maintains an upright
position by actuating the front wheel of the motorcycle to make slight turns as the
robot drives. The acceleration from turning creates a lateral reaction force on the
motorcycle which is utilized to keep the bike upright [3]. The degree of turning
required to generate the necessary balancing force is small enough that it does not
inhibit the ability of the robot to successfully navigate the course. The major
shortfall of a steering-based balance system for a two wheeled vehicle is that as
the forward speed of the vehicle decreases, the radius of the turns necessary to
maintain balance must increase to result in an equivalent lateral reaction force,
thus causing the vehicle to weave as it moves forward.

Fig 1.6 : The Ghostrider Motorcycle.

1.2.4 Murata Boy

Murata Boy is a small bipedal humanoid robot designed to ride a miniature

bicycle. The bicycle ridden by Murata boy is functionally equivalent to a normal
bicycle, only scaled down. The Murata Boy is approximately 20" tall when it is on
its bicycle. All of the balancing is performed by the Murata Boy robot through the
use of gyroscopic sensors to determine its position and tilt. It balances by
accelerating an embedded flywheel, seen in figure 1.7, around its spin axis, which
is parallel to the direction of forward motion of its bicycle [4]. By accelerating the
flywheel, Murata boy is able to lean slightly to the left or the right. Since the
Murata Boy robot is able to detect it's position and orientation in space, it can
keep it's center of gravity over it's bicycles wheels, and thus maintain stability.
The Murata Boy robot represents a stabilization strategy in which rather than
making the bicycle itself more stable, the rider is given assistance in positioning
their body in such away as to maintain balance.

Though this strategy may be useful in teaching the rider proper technique,
the manner in which the Murata Boy adjusts its position would not be effective for
a human user, even if the system could be adapted as a wearable flywheel. Murata
Boy is capable of keeping track of all of its parts, and modeling its current center
of gravity. Since positional correction is achieved by accelerating a flywheel

around it's spin axis in either the positive or the negative direction, the system will
fail when the motor reaches its maximum speed. This would happen if the rider
had a tendency to lean to one side while riding

Fig 1.7 : Murata Boy


The bicycle’s environmental friendliness and light weight make it a good

means of transportation. A robot bicycle is, by nature, an unstable system whose
inherent nonlinearity makes it difficult to control. This in turn, brings interesting
challenges to the control engineering community. Researchers have been
exploring different mechatronic solutions for dynamically balancing and
manoeuvring robot bicycles .

A self-balancing robot bicycle uses sensors to detect the roll angle of the
bicycle and actuators to bring it into balance as needed, similar to an inverted
pendulum. It is thus an unstable nonlinear system.

A self-balancing robot bicycle can be implemented in several ways. In this

work, we review these methods, and introduce our mechanism which involves a
control moment gyro (CMG); an attitude control device typically used in
spacecraft attitude control systems. A CMG consists of a spinning rotor and one or
more motorized gimbals that tilt the rotor’s angular momentum. As the rotor tilts,
the changing angular momentum causes gyroscopic precession torque that
balances the bicycle.

A bicycle is inherently unstable and without appropriate control, it is

uncontrollable and cannot be balanced. There are several different methods for 2
balancing of robot bicycles, such as the use of gyroscopic stabilization by Beznos
et al. in 1998 . The stabilization unit consists of two coupled gyroscopes spinning
in opposite directions. It makes use of the gyroscopic torque due to the precession
of gyroscopes. This torque counteracts the destabilizing torque due to gravity

Lee and Ham in 2002 proposed a load mass balance system. A control
strategy was developed to turn the bicycle system left or right by moving the
centre of a load mass left and right respectively.

Tanaka and Murakami in 2004 proposed the use of steering control to

balance the bicycle. The control method for bicycle steering based on acceleration
control is proposed. The steer angle was controlled via a servo motor, and an
electric motor was used to maintain forward speed. The dynamic model for the
bicycle is derived from equilibrium of gravity and centrifugal force. The bicycle
was tested on a treadmill apparatus and the controller demonstrated the ability to
stabilize the bicycle effectively.

A very well-known self-balancing robot bicycle, Murata Boy, was

developed by Murata in 2005 [4]. Murata Boy uses a reaction wheel inside the
robot as a torque generator, as an actuator to balance the bicycle. The reaction
wheel consists of a spinning rotor, whose spin rate is nominally zero. Its spin axis
is fixed to the bicycle, and its speed is increased or decreased to generate reaction
torque around the spin axis. Reaction wheels are the simplest and least expensive
of all momentum-exchange actuators. Its advantages are low cost, simplicity, and
the absence of ground
reaction. Its disadvantages are that it consumes more energy and cannot produce large
amounts of torque.

In another approach proposed by Gallaspy , the bicycle can be balanced by

controlling the torque exerted on the steering handlebar. Based on the amount of
roll, a controller controls the amount of torque applied to the handlebar to balance
the bicycle. Advantages of such a system include low mass and low energy
consumption. Disadvantages of such as system is its lack of robustness against
large roll disturbance.

Among these methods, the CMG, a gyroscopic stabilizer is a good choice

because its response time is short and the system is stable when the bicycle is
stationary. The CMG consists of a spinning rotor with a large, constant angular

momentum, whose angular momentum vector direction can be changed for a
bicycle by rotating the spinning rotor. The spinning rotor, which is on a gimbal,
applies a torque to the gimbal to produce a precessional, gyroscopic reaction
torque orthogonal to both the rotor spin and gimbal axes. A CMG amplifies torque
because a small gimbal torque input produces a large control torque to the bicycle.

The robot described in this work uses the CMG as a momentum exchange
actuator to balance the bicycle. Advantages of such a system include its being able
to produce large amounts of torque and having no ground reaction force. The
CMG has not been widely used as an actuator other than on large spacecraft to
control the attitude of large spacecraft and space infrastructure such as the
International Space Station . There are many reasons for this, but mainly this is
due to the complexity of the mechanical and control system needed to implement
an effective CMG, and also because off-the-shelf CMG systems are generally
made for larger satellite market. Large torque amplification and momentum
storage capacity are two basic properties that make CMG superior when compared
to the reaction wheels. Compared with reaction wheels, CMG are relatively
lightweight and they have a capability to generate higher torque levels per unit kg.


If the axis of a spinning or rotating body is given an angular motion about

an axis perpendicular to the axis of spin, an angular acceleration acts on the body
about the third perpendicular axis. The torque required to produce this
acceleration is known as the active gyroscopic torque. A reactive gyroscopic
torque or couple also acts similar to the concept of centripetal and centrifugal
forces on a rotating body. The effect produced by the reactive gyroscopic couple
is known as the gyroscopic effect. Thus aero planes, ships, automobiles, etc., that
have rotating parts in the form of wheels or rotors of engine experience this effect
while taking a turn i.e., when the axes of spin is subjected to some angular motion

3.1 Angular velocity

The angular velocity of a rotating body is specified by

 The magnitude of velocity

 The direction of the axis of rotor
 The sense of rotation of the rotor, i.e., clockwise or counter clock wise

Angular velocity is represented by a vector in the following manner

I. Magnitude of the velocity is represented by the length of the vector.

II. Direction of axis of the rotor is represented by drawing the vector parallel
to the axis of the rotor or normal to the plane of the angular velocity.
III. Sense of rotation of the rotor is denoted by taking the direction of the
vector in a set rule. The general rule is that of a right-handed screw, i.e., if
a screw is rotated in clockwise direction ,it goes away from the viewer and
vice versa.

For example, Fig. 3.1 (a) shows a rotor which rotates in the clockwise
direction when viewed from the end A. Its angular motion has been shown
vectorially in Fig. 10 (b). The vector has been taken to a scale parallel to the axis
of the rotor. The sense of direction of the vector is from a to b according to the
screw rule. However, if the direction of rotation of the rotor is reversed, it would
be from b to a Fig. 3.1 (c).

Fig 3.1: angular velocity

3.2 Angular acceleration

Let a rotor spin (rotate) about the horizontal axis Ox at a speed of 𝜔 rad/s
in the direction as shown in Fig. 3.2(a). Let oa represent its angular velocity [Fig.
3.2 (b)] , if the magnitude of the angular velocity changes to (𝜔+d𝜔) and the
direction of the axis of spin to Ox' (in time dt), the vector ob would represent its
angular velocity in the new position. Join ab which represents the change in the
angular velocity of the rotor. The vector ab can be resolved into two components:

1. ac representing angular velocity change in a plane normal to ac or x-

2. cb representing angular velocity change in a plane normal to cb or y-

Fig 3.2: angular acceleration

Change of angular velocity ,ac = ( 𝜔+δ𝜔)cosδθ – 𝜔

( 𝜔 +δ𝜔 )cos δθ − 𝜔
Rate of change of angular velocity = δt

( 𝜔 +δ𝜔 )cos δθ − 𝜔
Angular acceleration= limδt→0 δt

As δt → 0, δθ → 0 and 𝑐𝑜𝑠δθ → 1

𝜔 +δ𝜔 − 𝜔 δ𝜔
There fore, Angular acceleration =limδt→0 =
δt δt

Change in angular velocity , cb = ( 𝜔+δ𝜔)sinδθ

( 𝜔 +δ𝜔 )sin δθ
Rate of change of angular velocity = δt

( 𝜔 +δ𝜔 )sin δθ
Angular acceleration = limδt→0 δt

As δt → 0, δθ → 0 and 𝑠𝑖𝑛δθ → δθ

( 𝜔 +δ𝜔 )δθ δθ
There fore, Angular acceleration = limδt→0 =𝜔
δt δt

δ𝜔 δθ
Total angular acceleration = +𝜔
δt δt

This shows that total angular acceleration of the rotor is sum of

1. , representing the change in magnitude of angular velocity of the rotor.

2. 𝜔 , representing the change in direction of axis of spin.

3.3 Gyroscopic torque

Let I be the moment of inertia of a rotor and to its angular velocity about a
horizontal axis of spin Ox in the direction as shown in Fig. 3.3(a). Let this axis of
spin turn through a small angle δθ in the horizontal plane (xy) to the position Ox'
in time δt.

Figure 3.3 (b) shows the vector diagram. oa represents the angular velocity
vector when the axis is ax and ob when the axis is changed to Ox'. Then ab
represents the change in the angular velocity due to change in direction of the axis
of spin of the rotor. This change in the angular velocity is clockwise when viewed
from a towards b and is in the vertical plane xz. This change results in an angular
acceleration, the sense and direction of which are the same as that of the change in
the angular velocity.

Fig 3.3 : Gyroscopic torque

Change in angular velocity ab = 𝜔 × δθ

Angular acceleration ,α = 𝜔 δt

In the limit when δt → 0 , α = 𝜔 δt

Usually , the angular acceleration of spin is called angular velocity of

precession(ωP)Therefore angular acceleration ,

α = ω.ωp (3.1)

The torque required to required to produce acceleration is known as

gyroscopic torque and is a couple which must be applied to the axis of the spin to
cause it to rotate with angular velocity ωP about the axis of precession Oz
Acceleration torque ,T =I

A = I ω.ωP (3.2)

For the configuration of Fig. 3.3(a),

 Ox is known as the axis of spin

 Oz is known as the axis of precession
 Oy is known as the axis of gyroscopic couple
 yz is the plane of spin (parallel to plane of rotor)
 xy is the plane of precession
 yz is the plane of gyroscopic couple00

The torque obtained above is that which is required to cause the axis of
spin to precess in the horizontal plane and is known as the active gyroscopic
tongue or the applied torque. A reactive gyroscopic torque or reaction torque is
also applied to the axis which tends to rotate the axis of spin in the opposite
direction, i.e. in the counter-clockwise direction in the above case. Just as the
centrifugal force on a rotating body tends to move the body outwards, while a
centripetal acceleration (and thus centripetal force) acts on it inwards, in the same
way, the effects of active and reactive gyroscopic torques can be understood.
The effect of the gyroscopic couple on a rotating body is known as the
gyroscope ct on the body. A gyroscope is a spinning body which is free to move
in other directions under the action of external forces.


A control momentum gyroscope (CMG) is an attitude control device that

is generally used in spacecraft attitude control systems. It consists of a spinning
rotor and one or more motorized gimbals that tilt the rotor’s angular momentum.
As the rotor tilts, the changing angular momentum causes a gyroscopic torque that
rotates the spacecraft.

Fig 4.1 : Components of a single-axis CMG.

This project employs a single axis CMG which is the most energy-efficient
among different design of CMGs. As the motorized gimbal of a single axis CMG
rotates, the change in direction of the rotor’s angular momentum generates a
precessional torque that reacts onto the frame of the bicycle to which the CMG is
mounted. The precessional torque generated is used to balance the bicycle. Single-
gimbal CMG exchange angular momentum is very efficient and requires very
little power. Large amount of torque can be generated for relatively small
electrical input to the gimbal motor; CMG is a torque amplification device.

The bicycle relies on gyroscopic precession torque to stabilize the bicycle while it
is upright. Figure 4.2 shows how precession torque balances the bicycle.

Fig 4.2 : Balancing of bicycle using gyroscopic precession torque generated by


When the bicycle is tilted at angle θroll as shown in Figure 4.2, an inertia
measurement unit (IMU) sensor detects the roll angle. Roll data is fed to an on-
board controller that in turn commands the CMG’s gimbal motor to rotate so that
gyroscopic precession torque is produced to balance the bicycle upright. The
system uses a single gimbal CMG and generates only one axis torque. The
direction of output torque change is based on gimbal motion. Figure 4.1 shows the
components of a single gimbal CMG. The system uses gyroscopic torque to
balance the bicycle. With reference to Figure 4.2, when the CMG precess about
the gimbal axis, a gyroscopic torque normal to the frame of the bicycle will be
generated to balance the bicycle.
The following mathematical analysis illustrates how the flywheel
configuration above can be used to stabilize the bicycle.

Gyroscopic torque of the flywheel about the roll axis of the bicycle (axis
defining the tilt angle of the bicycle from its vertical position

T = Iflywheel × ω × 𝑑𝑡 (4.1)

Fig 4.3 : Rotation axes of the flywheel gimbal

Fig 4.4 : Variables used in representing the motion of the system.

Where Iflywheel is the moment of inertia of the flywheel about its spin axis,
ω is the angular velocity of the flywheel about its spin axis, is the angular

velocity of the flywheel about the vertical axis.

Moment causing the bicycle to tilt due to gravity is

T = W × h × sinФ (4.2)

where W is the weight of the bicycle, h is the height of the bicycle's center
of gravity, and Ф is the tilt angle of the bicycle The equation of motion for the
bicycle about the roll axis is therefore

𝑑2 Ф 𝑑𝜃
Ibicycle × + Iflywheel × ω × = T = W × h × sinФ (4.3)
𝑑𝑡2 𝑑𝑡

Where Ibicycle is the moment of inertia of the bicycle about the roll axis (the
ground).Based on equation 3, it is possible to control the tilt angle Ф of the
bicycle by controlling the deflection angle θ of the flywheel around its gimbal


5.1 Over view

Based on the design requirements, there were two options for what bicycle
frame to use for this project: a child-sized bicycle or a smaller frame built from
scratch. In the end, it was decided to build a small scale frame from scratch due to
cost considerations and space considerations. Due to the high mass of a child-
sized bicycle, the flywheel motor and associated controller required to balance it
would be large and costly, and would not fit within the budget of this project[6].

The whole bicycle is constructed with the help of aluminum angles and
arrangements to mount drive motor and keeping electrical circuitry. The cycle is
low-lying so as to make its centre of mass low. Flywheel is made of mild steel,
and it is sufficiently heavy enough to provide enough reactionary torque in the
high torque motor attached to the vertical aluminum angles. The flywheel is
mounted on an axis parallel to the length of the bicycle. As the bicycle tilts, a
motor applies a torque to the flywheel, which applies a reactionary torque on the
bicycle to re-balance. A microcontroller implements a PID control algorithm
based on the measured tilt angle to determine the required torque for the motor to
apply to the flywheel.

5.2 Control Overview

The control of the bicycle is divided into two parts: balancing controlled
by a microcontroller and steering and propulsion remotely controlled by an
operator. The two control systems are described in further detail below, and the
entire system is illustrated in a fig.

Fig.5.1 : System block diagram

The AT mega 16 (the selected microcontroller) reads the output of the

accelerometer and the gyroscope via the 12-bit analog-to-digital converter, and
interprets the resulting values as a measurement of the bicycle’s tilt angle. The
measured angle is implemented into a PID algorithm, and outputs a corresponding
voltage to the motor controller. The motor controller then outputs a voltage to the
DC motor, which is geared down, and ultimately actuates the flywheel. A torque
is exerted on the flywheel, and a reaction torque is exerted on the bicycle. This
means in all aircraft with exception of agricultural and small general aviation
airplanes, where the installation of a movable landing gear would increase the
costs beyond the requirements of the aircraft category. Landing gear extraction is
a primary operation and always its actuation has high redundancy.

5.2.1 Microcontroller Unit

The microcontroller selected to control the balance of the bicycle is the

AT mega 16. The processing unit used is Atmel ATMega16 microcontroller unit
which is a versatile EEPROM. It has four I/O (Input / Output) ports, onboard
ADC (Analog to Digital Converter) and PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) outputs
for motor control. It can be programmed easily with minimum hardware
requirements which make it extremely popular in robotics applications. Here it
performs the following functions:

 ADC conversion of outputs of Rate Gyro and Accelerometer.
 Processing the input signals
 Periodic recalibration of gyro
 Display of angle & other data.
 Control of actuator unit

Fig. 5.2 : ATMega16 functions

Fig. 5.3 : ATMega16

5.2.2 Angle Sensor

Tilt sensing is the crux of this project and the most difficult part as well.

 Triple Axis Accelerometer ADXL335

 Dual Axis Gyroscope IDG500

To measure the bicycle’s tilt angle, it was decided to use an accelerometer
and a gyroscope, and to combine them using a complimentary filter. Integrating
these two sensors proves useful when calculating the bicycle’s tilt angle.
Accelerometers may be used to measure the angle with respect to gravity directly,
but they are highly susceptible to noise. Gyros are less susceptible to noise, but
they measure angular velocity. As a result, the gyro output must be integrated in
order to obtain a measurement of angular position. This integration yields an error
known as drift, a drawback of the gyro. Integrating both sensors allows one to
easily combine the output of each sensor in order to obtain a more accurate angle
reading. This is accomplished through the implementation of a filter, which
combines the advantages of each sensor and eliminates the drawbacks of each

Fig. 5.4 : Triple Axis Accelerometer ADXL335

5.2.3 Actuator Unit

As the bicycle tilts, we need to apply a restoring force to return the robot to
vertical position. A reaction wheel pendulum model is followed for the balancing
purpose. The components used are:

 High torque 24V DC motor

 A metallic reaction wheel
 Motor driver L293D

To supply sufficient power to the flywheel, a fairly powerful motor and a

gear reducer are required. In order to choose the motor, the designed frame and
layout of components, as well as the calculations to model a simple inverted
pendulum, were input into a MATLAB simulation using Simulink. This
simulation allowed the team to determine the power, torque and velocity that the
motor needed to supply. To meet these requirements, we use High torque 24V DC

The capacitor connected across the motor charges and discharges during
the on and off time respectively, thus behaving like an integrator. The torque
generated by the motor is a function of the average value of current supplied to it.
It seems to be obvious that once we have angle we can rotate the flywheel with
acceleration proportional to it, but that won't do the job. If that is done what
actually will happen is that when there is a tilt the bike will cross the mean
position and reach the other side till the same tilt angle. To fix this we need some
kind of algorithm that can damp this periodic motion and make it stable at the
mean position after some time. This is where PID (Proportional Integral and
Derivative) Controller comes to use.



6.1 Conclusion

This paper is highly concentrated on the bicycle using reaction wheel

pendulum. Tilted information to roll axis could is attained through the sensor
integration of complementary filter between gyroscope and accelerometer. The
simplest structured PID controller has been applied to roll direction joint. As
future works, robust controller for the roll axis to minimize external disturbances
effects, and S curved trajectory are under research. Sustainable and practical
personal mobility solutions for campus environments have traditionally revolved
around the use of bicycles, or provision of pedestrian facilities. However many
campus environments also experience traffic congestion, parking difficulties and
pollution from fossil-fuelled vehicles. It appears that pedal power alone has not
been sufficient to supplant the use of petrol and diesel vehicles to date, and
therefore it is opportune to investigate both the reasons behind the continual use of
environmentally unfriendly transport, and consider potential solutions. This paper
presents the results from a year-long study into electric bicycle effectiveness for a
large tropical campus, identifying barriers to bicycle use that can be overcome
through the availability of public use electric bicycles.

6.2 Future Scope

The above mentioned prototype thus focuses upon using gyroscopic

principle for stabilization of a 2-Wheeler.

However this concept is rather implemented on a large scale to develop a
Motor-bike concept vehicle developed by Lit motors which offers the advantages
of both car (comfort, safety) & bike (enhanced mileage, less occupancy). This
concept car is rather an evolution of the earlier used gyroscopic vehicles into a
modern electric vehicle that stabilizes on its own[7].

The vehicle has two spinning wheels/discs that are imparted on back side
of the vehicle, they mainly act as gyroscope and the precession of which is
responsible for the stability of the vehicle. Thus, the concept car developed by Lit
motors is self stabilizing, however it has one more added feature i.e. even if any
external force is applied to the vehicle it comes back to its original position, i.e. it
not only stabilizes but also balances itself on its own against any disturbances in
stationary as well as moving condition.

Fig 6.1 : C-1 a Motor bike concept vehicle

The self balancing phenomenon is possible only because of the high level
electronic system imparted in the vehicle that gives the necessary signal to the
gyroscope to produce a counterbalancing effect as per the applied external force
so that the vehicle comes back to the initial position after getting displaced.


[1] K. Astrom, “Bicycle dynamics and control: Adapted bicycles for

education and research,” IEEE Control Systems Magazine, August 2005,
pp. 26-47.
[2] Y. Ou and Y. Xu, “Gyroscopically stabilized robot: Balance and
tracking," International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems”, vol. 1,
no. 1, pp. 23-32.
[3] (as on
girl-robots/ (as on 10-3-17)
[5] S S Rattan,Theory of machine ,fourth edition , McGraw Hill Education
(India) private Ltd. New Delhi
[6] Mukeshkumar Prasad &, Nilesh W. Nirwan “Design and Fabrication of
Automatic Balancing Bicycle” International Journal of Science,
Engineering and Technology Research (IJSETR), Volume 5, Issue 2,
February 2016.
[7] Akshay Khot & Nishad Kumbhojkar“Modeling and validation of
prototype of Self stabilizing two wheeler using Gyroscope”International
journal of advanced research in engineering And technology (ijaret)
Volume 5, Issue 12, December (2014), pp. 48-54