Date of Award

Winter 12-7-2023

Access Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering


Mechanical Engineering

Committee Chair

Marc Compere

Committee Advisor

Jean-Michel Dhainaut

First Committee Member

Christopher Hockley

Second Committee Member

Shuzhen Luo

Third Committee Member

Patrick Currier

College Dean

Jim Gregory


The instantaneous turn radius of an Ackermann steering vehicle is the distance to a point in space about which the vehicle will travel in an arc during a turn. There are at least six ways to estimate instantaneous turn radius and each method uses different inputs and has distinct advantages and disadvantages. In this thesis, six different methods will be used to estimate the instantaneous turn radius of a vehicle traveling on a closed circuit. This testing will clarify similarities and differences between the methods. This thesis clarifies which method will be the most appropriate for a given set of available inputs. The testing will be conducted with commonly available sensors. The research in this thesis will allow developers to choose the best method for their sensor suite.