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Technical Paper

Considering Driver Balance Capability in Truck Shifter Design

2006-07-04
2006-01-2360
A person's ability to perform a task is often limited by their ability to maintain balance. This is particularly true in lateral work performed in seated environments. For a truck driver operating the shift lever of a manual transmission, excessive shift forces can necessitate pulling on the steering wheel with the other hand to maintain balance, creating a potentially unsafe condition. An analysis of posture and balance in truck shifter operation was conducted using balance limits to define the acceptable range of shifter locations. The results are dependent on initial driver position, reach postures, and shoulder strength. The effects of shifter force direction and magnitude were explored to demonstrate the application of the analysis method. This methodology can readily be applied to other problems involving hand-force exertions in seated environments.
Technical Paper

Abdominal Impact Response to Rigid-Bar, Seatbelt, and Airbag Loading

2001-11-01
2001-22-0001
This study was conducted to resolve discrepancies and fill in gaps in the biomechanical impact response of the human abdomen to frontal impact loading. Three types of abdominal loading were studied: rigid-bar impacts, seatbelt loading, and close-proximity (out-of-position) airbag deployments. Eleven rigid-bar free-back tests were performed into the mid and upper abdomens of unembalmed instrumented human cadavers using nominal impact speeds of 6 and 9 m/s. Seven fixed-back rigid-bar tests were also conducted at 3, 6, and 9 m/s using one cadaver to examine the effects of body mass, spinal flexion, and repeated testing. Load-penetration corridors were developed and compared to those previously established by other researchers. Six seatbelt tests were conducted using three cadavers and a peak-loading rate of 3 m/s. The seatbelt loading tests were designed to maximize belt/abdomen interaction and were not necessarily representative of real-world crashes.
Technical Paper

Prediction of Airbag-Induced Forearm Fractures and Airbag Aggressivity

2001-11-01
2001-22-0024
This study continued the biomechanical investigations of forearm fractures caused by direct loading of steering-wheel airbags during the early stages of deployment. Twenty-four static deployments of driver airbags were conducted into the forearms of unembalmed whole cadavers using a range of airbags, including airbags that are depowered as allowed by the new federal requirements for frontal impact testing. In general, the depowered airbags showed a reduction in incidence and severity of forearm fractures compared to the pre-depowered airbags tested. Data from these twenty-four tests were combined with results from previous studies to develop a refined empirical model for fracture occurrence based on Average Distal Forearm Speed (ADFS), and a revised value for fifty-percent probability of forearm-bone fracture of 10.5 m/s. Bone mineral content, which is directly related to forearm tolerance, was found to be linearly related to arm mass.
Technical Paper

Development of a New Seating Accommodation Model

1996-02-01
960479
Dynamic seat-position testing conducted recently at UMTRI on several different vehicles indicates that, in many cases, the current seating accommodation model represented in SAE J1517 does not accurately predict the distribution of driver seat positions. In general, J1517 tends to predict population percentile seat positions that are forward of observed percentile seat positions, and differences can be as much as 60 mm. It was hypothesized that vehicle factors other than seat height can have substantial and independent effects on driver seat position. The effects of steering-wheel position, seat height, seat-cushion angle, and transmission type on driver fore/aft seat position are being investigated, and results are being used to develop a new driver seating accommodation model called SAM.
Technical Paper

Simple Predictors of the Performance of A-trains

1993-11-01
932995
Figures of merit describing the performance qualities of multiple-trailer vehicle combinations (for example, rearward amplification) are usually determined from either full-scale vehicle testing or computer simulation analysis. Either method is expensive and time consuming, and restricted in practice to organizations with specialized equipment and engineering skills. One goal of a recent study, conducted by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute and sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration, was to use basic vehicle properties to develop simple formulations for estimating the performance qualities of multiple-trailer vehicle combinations. Several hundred computer simulation runs were made using UMTRI's Yaw/Roll program. Five common double-trailer vehicle configurations (defined by trailer lengths and axle configurations) were studied. Each of the five vehicles was subject to fifteen parameter variations.
Technical Paper

Vehicle Design Implications of the Turner Proposal

1989-11-01
892461
The implications of restricting axle loads to preserve pavements while at the same time allowing gross combination weights over 80,000 pounds are examined with respect to the design qualities of the types of heavy trucks that might be developed. The proposed vehicles would have more axles than current designs thereby achieving higher gross combination weights with smaller axle loads. Design factors influencing mobility, productivity, preservation of the highway infrastructure, and performance in safety-related maneuvers are discussed.
Technical Paper

Directional Dynamics Considerations for Multi-Articulated, Multi-Axled Heavy Vehicles

1989-11-01
892499
Directional performance characteristics of heavy truck combinations are reviewed with respect to the influences of multiple axles and articulation points. The performance characteristics considered include steady turning, directional stability, and forced responses in obstacle avoidance maneuvers. The review provides useful insights to engineers interested in the handling and safety qualities of these types of vehicles.
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