The brake system is actually composed of two kinds of systems---Hydraulics and Friction Materials. Here's what happens within these systems between the time your foot hits the brake pedal and your car stops.
Anti-Lock Brakes: A System Built For Safety
Computer-controlled anti-lock braking systems (ABS) are a recently developed safety feature. When sudden stops are made, the ABS prevents wheel lock-up. The system is comprised of wheel-speed sensors that monitor wheel rotation, computer-controlled hydraulics that pulse the brakes on and off rapidly, and the on-board computer.