Brake-By-Wire: The future of braking technology is making its way from the racetrack to luxury cars to ordinary cars.
When a Formula 1 racing driver hits the brakes (brake-by-wire), he isn’t applying actual pressure to the master cylinder controlling the rear brakes. Instead, he’s sending a signal for the computer to interpret, and it’s the computer that determines how much pressure to apply to the rear brake calipers.
We call this technology brake-by-wire because it cuts the physical link between the pedal and the brake system itself. (Throttle-by-wire and steer-by-wire exist as well.) Sensors and actuators read the amount of pressure a driver inputs, and this force is transferred to all the brakes from the master cylinder using hydraulic fluid.