Study of the Similarity between Small Overlap Impact (SOI) Crashworthiness Tests and Real SOI Accidents in Spain 2014-36-0480
Recent studies identified new trends in frontal accident configurations, i.e. small overlap. This emerging type of crash represents a higher injury risk for the occupants compared to other frontal crashes with longer overlap due to the small interaction of the structural energy absorption elements.
In response to this new accident reality, IIHS introduced a new type of crash to evaluate crashworthiness: the Small Overlap Impact (SOI). The purpose of this study is to analyze the accident trend in Spain to study the changes in the overlap in frontal crashes and identify crashworthiness similarities between an SOI crash test and a real crash.
This research focuses on real accident data from Spain gathered in IDIADA's accident database with a crash configuration similar to SOI. Through the analysis of structural damage in real accidents and analysis of SOI tests performed, several deformation patterns have been detected in SOI tests and also in real accidents.
Increasing the test configurations for vehicle safety development can enable a higher standard of safety in vehicles. However, an increased number of test configurations is costly and not always cost effective. For this reason, further work is needed in this field to assess the suitability of the introduction of new testing configurations in Europe.
The SOI test is of recent introduction and the crashworthiness of some of the structural elements is still not fully acknowledged. For this reason, further development in both testing and vehicle safety must be implemented.