Safer and more efficient double suspension Orbea bicycles


When designing and manufacturing double suspension bicycles, the manufacturer faces the problem of not being to quantify the particular sensations that cyclists experience for objective variables.

The DISUSBI project has helped improve the process of designing double suspension bicycles by incorporating a telemetry system that measures the real behaviour of the bicycle and generates more effective computer simulations.

The result is a new double suspension mountain bicycle that is closer to the ideal bicycle that customers are looking for.


CEIT-IK4's role

  • Create the Advanced Dynamics design tool for Orbea
  • Conduct a test bench study of the suspension forks and the rear shock absorbers on several bicycles in order to characterize the friction and rigidity of the suspension for different air pressures and to measure damping at several frequencies.
  • Use the information gathered to create mathematical models in order to simulate the suspension's behaviour.
  • Do track testing with two user groups (expert cyclists and amateur riders), adapting the tests to the reality of the end user: pedalling on a treadmill that simulates different hill grades and running through three obstacle courses to study the comfort, safety and efficiency of the shock absorption while moving through the obstacles.
  • Take the following measurements:
    • Cyclists' subjective opinion of the bikes' behaviour.
    • Objective values measured via a series of sensors placed on the bicycle.
  • Design a telemetry system that evaluates:
    • Acceleration in the wheels and the frame
    • Length of the forks and shock absorbers
    • Angular velocity of each wheel
    • Position of the cranks relative to the frame
    • Forces that the cyclist exerts on the saddle and the handlebars
    • Power generated by the cyclist when pedalling



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