1984-04-01

Front Crash Analysis of a Steel Frame Auto Using a Finite Element Computer Code 840728

This paper gives a summary of the mathematical simulation of the 30 mph front impact of a steel frame, two passenger, front engine automobile into a rigid vertical barrier. The simulation was performed using the DYCAST/GAC nonlinear structural dynamic finite element computer code. The purpose of this work was to evaluate the structural design in its ability to control the impact forces, deformations, and energy dissipation. A nonlinear finite element model of the vehicle was prepared that: idealized the structure with beam and membrane elements having plasticity, failure, and large deformations; modelled the engine as a rigid body properly mounted to the frame; modelled tires, radiators, etc., as nonlinear crush springs utilizing test data; and represented internal gaps between components and external gaps to the barrier as nonlinear gap springs. The vehicle was properly weighted and suspended on the front and rear wheels. The paper will discuss the finite element model and the major results using computer-generated graphics.

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