The Science of Stopping: It's All About Friction - Bicycle Brakes Convert Kinetic Energy (Motion) Into Thermal Energy (Heat).
The approximate braking distance can be found by determining the work required to
dissipate the bike’s kinetic energy:
Through the Work-Energy Principle it can then be said that:
Finally, by rearranging the equation and cancelling like terms we can form an equation for braking distance:
μ = coefficient of friction
How's it Work?
Rubber pads are pressed against the rim of the wheel.
Advantages: inexpensive, lightweight, easy to maintain, mechanically
Disadvantages: easily contaminated, less braking power
How's it Work? Metallic or ceramic pads are pressed against a metal
rotor that's attached to the wheel.
Advantages: powerful, protected from contaminates, better heat dissipation
- Disadvantages: expensive, heavy, difficult to maintain