1997-02-24

Testing Options Available for Head Impact Protection Development 970576

Occupant protection in the event of interior head impact is a major issue in the development process of interior component countermeasures. As phase-in schedules for head impact protection regulations fast approach, auto safety engineers are presented with major challenges in regard to developing suitable design alternatives. This paper presents a variety of testing options which are available to evaluate interior design options. These test alternatives vary from simple component-level drop tests to in-vehicle compliance testing. Each type of test serves a specific purpose in the development of interior components from a head impact protection perspective. The basic parameters for each type of test, including mass, form shape, velocity, and motion will be discussed. Test data from component-level testing is presented, as well as the advantages and disadvantages for each alternative. Readers of this paper will gain a broader understanding of what alternatives are available for evaluating interior components at all phases of development.

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