Using Force-Displacement Data to Predict the EBS of Car into Barrier Impacts 2016-01-1483
The objective of this study was to assess the accuracy of using high-speed frontal barrier crash tests to predict the impact speed, i.e. equivalent barrier speed (EBS), of a lower-speed frontal barrier crash. Force-displacement (F-D) curves were produced by synchronizing the load cell barrier (LCB) data with the accelerometer data. Our analysis revealed that the F-D curves, including the rebound phase, for the same vehicle model at the same impact speed were generally similar. The test vehicle crush at the time of barrier separation, determined from the F-D curves, was on average 17±16% (N = 150) greater than the reported maximum hand-measured residual crush to the bumper cover. The EBS calculated from the F-D curves was on average 4±4% (N=158) greater than the reported EBS, indicating that using F-D curves derived from LCB data is a reliable method for calculating vehicle approach energy in a crash test. Our method of using F-D curves from high-speed tests to predict the EBS of a lower-speed barrier crash overestimated the EBS of actual lower-speed tests by an average of 21±9% (N = 129). Further work in developing and refining our method is needed to improve the accuracy of predicting a lower-speed EBS.