1995-02-01

Linking High Resolution Barrier Load Measurements with Enhancing Vehicle Structure Development 951019

Safety systems must have sound structural performance and, as safety performance targets and vehicle complexity rise to ever higher levels, the impact performance of vehicle structures comes under microscopic scrutiny. Full scale crash tests are used to demonstrate the impact performance of a vehicle's structure but the required number of expensive prototypes may not be available in the early stages of any vehicle programme. Hence a means is required to develop the structural performance under impact loading by using the minimum number of vehicles without reducing quality and performance or increasing costs and development timescales.
Based on its experience of crash technology, MIRA has designed, developed and installed a new tool to address this issue, in the form of a barrier load cell array with significantly increased geometric resolution and superior data processing, called the Microcell Barrier.
This system enables one prototype vehicle to be crash tested and very detailed load information collected throughout the test from 488 load cells. In conjunction with strategically placed accelerometers in the vehicle, the derived load/deformation information can be used to enhance the mathematical model of the vehicle's structure such that its development can be continued analytically.
Advanced test and modelling techniques are described and vehicle structural designs are evaluated.

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