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Technical Paper

Influence of Seating Position on Dummy Responses with ABTS Seats in Severe Rear Impacts

2009-04-20
2009-01-0250
Objective: This study analyzes rear sled tests with a 95th% male and 5th% female Hybrid III dummy in various seating positions on ABTS (All Belt to Seat) seats in severe rear impact tests. Dummy interactions with the deforming seatback and upper body extension around the seat frame are considered. Methods: The 1st series involved an open sled fixture with a Sebring ABTS seat at 30 mph rear delta V. A 95th% Hybrid III dummy was placed in four different seating positions: 1) normal, 2) leaning inboard, 3) leaning forward and inboard, and 4) leaning forward and outboard. The 2nd series used a 5th% female Hybrid III dummy in a Grand Voyager body buck at 25 mph rear delta V. The dummy was leaned forward and inboard on a LeSabre ABTS or Voyager seat. The 3rd series used a 5th% female Hybrid III dummy in an Explorer body buck at 26 mph rear delta V. The dummy was leaned forward and inboard on a Sebring ABTS or Explorer seat.
Journal Article

Vehicle and Occupant Responses in a Friction Trip Rollover Test

2009-04-20
2009-01-0830
Objective: A friction rollover test was conducted as part of a rollover sensing project. This study evaluates vehicle and occupant responses in the test. Methods: A flat dolly carried a Saab 9-3 sedan laterally, passenger-side leading to a release point at 42 km/h (26 mph) onto a high-friction surface. The vehicle was equipped with roll, pitch and yaw gyros near the center of gravity. Accelerometers were placed at the vehicle center tunnel, A-pillar near the roof, B-pillar near the sill, suspension sub-frame and wheels. Five off-board and two on-board cameras recorded kinematics. Hybrid III dummies were instrumented for head and chest acceleration and upper neck force and moment. Belt loads were measured. Results: The vehicle release caused the tires and then wheel rims to skid on the high-friction surface. The trip involved roll angular velocities >300 deg/s at 0.5 s and a far-side impact on the driver’s side roof at 0.94 s. The driver was inverted in the far-side, ground impact.
Technical Paper

Occupant Injury in Rollover Crashes: A Reexamination of Malibu II

2007-04-16
2007-01-0369
The original Malibu II study, conducted by Bahling et al, found that neck compression loading in rollover crashes is caused by the occupant moving toward the ground and therefore, roof crush was not causally related to the loading. Some have disputed this finding claiming that the occupant does not “dive toward the roof,” but rather, the roof “moves in” toward the occupant, and that roof deformation is the primary cause of cervical spine injuries in rollover crashes. The original study included a detailed analysis of film and force transducer data for 10 Potentially Injurious Impacts (PII's). This paper presents an independent analysis of these 10 PII's and one additional PII. This analysis uses the film and transducer data to evaluate the timing of roof deformation and neck loading, the magnitude of roof deformation at the time of peak neck load, and the motion of the vehicle and occupants in the inertial reference system.
Technical Paper

Headroom, Roof Crush, and Belted Excursion in Rollovers

2005-04-11
2005-01-0942
Based upon a review of the literature and new test data, the human and vehicle factors leading to head-to-roof contact in rollovers are quantified and illustrated. Vehicle design countermeasures and suggested areas of research are presented. Higher and stronger roofs and improved restraints must be analyzed as a system to evaluate the potential benefits in rollovers.
Technical Paper

Methods of Occupant Kinematics Analysis in Automobile Crashes

2002-03-04
2002-01-0536
Understanding occupant kinematics is an important part of accident reconstruction, particularly with respect to injury causation. Injuries are generally sustained as the occupant interacts with the vehicle interior surfaces and is rapidly accelerated to the struck component's post-impact velocity. This paper describes some methods for assessing occupant kinematics in a collision, and discusses their limitations. A useful technique is presented which is based on free-body analysis and can be used to establish an occupant's path of motion relative to the vehicle, locate the point of occupant contact, and determine the occupant's velocity relative to that contact location.
Technical Paper

LIMITATIONS OF ATB/CVS AS AN ACCIDENT RECONSTRUCTION TOOL

1997-02-24
971045
Occupant simulation models have been used to study trends or specific design changes in “typical” accident modes such as frontal, side, rear, and rollover. This paper explores the usage of the Articulated Total Body Program (ATB) as an accident reconstruction tool. The importance of model validation is discussed. Specific areas of concern such as the contact model, force-deflection data, occupant parameters, restraint system models, head/neck loadings, padding, and intrusion are discussed in the context of accident reconstruction.
Technical Paper

Injury Mechanisms and Field Accident Data Analysis in Rollover Accidents

1997-02-24
970396
Rollover accidents are responsible for a significant percentage of crash injuries. Increasing seat belt restraint use is the most effective way to reduce rollover injuries. Injuries to restrained occupants are also of interest. It has been suggested that head/neck injuries are caused by roof crush, and that modification to roof structures and seat belt systems would lead to a substantial reduction in severe rollover injuries. Field accident data and rollover testing are used to evaluate the relationship between roof crush, seat belt design, and severe rollover injuries.
Technical Paper

Response of Out-of-Position Dummies in Rear Impact

1994-03-01
941055
Field accident data suggest that a significant number of occupants involved in rear impacts may be positioned at impact other than in the “Normal Seated Position” - the optimum restraint configuration that has been used almost exclusively in published seat testing. Pre-impact vehicle acceleration from braking, swerving, or a prior frontal impact could cause an occupant to be leaning forward at the instant of the collision, creating a situation where the vehicle “ride-up” potential would be limited. No rear impact tests involving yielding, production-type seats with forward-leaning dummies are found in the literature. Thirty rear-impact sled tests with a forward-leaning, “Out-of-Position” Hybrid III dummy are presented. Tests were performed with a calibrated seat set in either the rigidified or yielding configuration and with the dummy either unbelted or restrained by a production three-point belt system. Test speeds ranged from 5 to 20 mph.
Technical Paper

Occupant Protection in Rear-end Collisions: I. Safety Priorities and Seat Belt Effectiveness

1991-10-01
912913
Recent detailed field accident data are examined with regard to injuries associated with rear impacts. The distribution of “Societal Harm” associated with various injury mechanisms is presented, and used to evaluate the performance of current seat back and restraint system designs. Deformation associated with seat back yield is shown to be beneficial in reducing overall Societal Harm in rear impacts. The Societal Harm associated with ejection and contact with the vehicle rear interior (the two injury mechanisms addressed by a rigid seat approach), is shown to be minimal. The field accident data also confirm that restraint usage in rear impacts has a substantial injury-reducing effect. Laboratory tests and computer simulations were run to investigate the mechanism by which seat belts protect occupants in rear impacts.
Technical Paper

Rear Stiffness Coefficients Derived from Barrier Test Data

1991-02-01
910120
Rear impacts in the crash test data base compiled by the NHTSA are analyzed and compared to the CRASH3 rear stiffness coefficients. The CRASH3 values do not represent the test data adequately. This is because the values were derived from limited data, and because some of the rear moving barrier test data were miscoded as fixed barrier tests. A review of the larger NHTSA data base does not support the CRASH3 assumption that vehicles of similar size (wheelbase) have similar rear stiffness characteristics. Therefore, it is important when reconstructing individual accidents to use crash test data specific to the vehicles involved. Repeated rear fixed barrier test data on four vehicles are analyzed to study the data trend at speeds below and above the NHTSA test data. Constant stiffness and constant force models are compared and a combination of the two is shown to fit available test data.
Technical Paper

The Assessment of the Societal Benefit of Side Impact Protection

1990-02-01
900379
This paper summarizes work relating to the assessment of societal benefits of side impact protection. National Crash Severity Study (NCSS) and National Accident Sampling System (NASS) accident data technigues were reviewed with respect to the reliability of output information concerning the distribution of side impact accidents by impact severity and relationships between injury and impact severity. NCSS and NASS are confounded by errors and inadequacies, primarily as a result of improper accident reconstruction based upon the CRASH computer program. Based on review of several sample cases, it is believed that the NCSS/NASS files underestimate Lower severities and overestimate higher severities in side impact, with delta-V errors probably overestimated by 25-30 percent in the case of the more serious accidents. These errors cannot be properly quantified except on a case-by-case basis. They introduce unknown biases into NCSS/NASS.
Technical Paper

A Perspective on Side Impact Occupant Crash Protection

1990-02-01
900373
The NHTSA notices of proposed rulemaking on side impact protection have focused worldwide attention on one of the most difficult and frustrating efforts in automobile crash safety. Traditional vehicle design has evolved obvious structural contrasts between the side of the struck vehicle and the front of the striking vehicle. Protection of near-side occupants from intruding door structure is a most perplexing engineering challenge. Much useful and insightful engineering work has been done in conjunction with NHTSA's proposed rulemaking. However, there are many major engineering issues which demand further definition before reasonable side impact rulemaking test criteria can be finalized. This paper reviews recent findings which characterize the human factors, biomechanics, and occupant position envelope of the typical side impact crash victim.
Technical Paper

A Comparison Between NHTSA Crash Test Data and CRASH3 Frontal Stiffness Coefficients

1990-02-01
900101
The appropriateness of the set of eight frontal stiffness coefficients used by the CRASH3 program to estimate vehicle deformation energy (and to subsequently derive estimates of vehicle delta-V) is examined. This examination consists of constructing so-called CRASH energy plots based on 402 frontal fixed barrier impact tests contained in the NHTSA's Vehicle Test Center Data Base (VTCDB) digital tape file. It is concluded that the use of category coefficients within the CRASH3 program can result in large delta-V errors, reaffirming the inappropriateness of this program for use in individual accident reconstructions. The use of the CRASH3 category stiffness coefficients is seen to generally overestimate vehicle energy absorption for vehicles with small amounts of frontal crush and to underestimate vehicle energy absorption for vehicles sustaining large crush.
Technical Paper

Crash Protection in Near-Side Impact - Advantages of a Supplemental Inflatable Restraint

1989-02-01
890602
Collision Safety Engineering, Inc. (CSE), has developed a test prototype system to protect occupants during lateral impacts. It is an inflatable system that offers the potential of improved protection from thoracic, abdominal and pelvic injury by moving an impact pad into the occupant early in the crash. Further, it shows promise for head and neck protection by deployment of a headbag that covers the major target areas of B-pillar, window space, and roofrail before head impact. Preliminary static and full-scale crash tests suggest the possibility of injury reduction in many real-world crashes, although much development work remains before the production viability of this concept can be established. A description of the system and its preliminary testing is preceded by an overview of side impact injury and comments on the recent NHTSA Rule Making notices dealing with side-impact injury.
Technical Paper

Evaluation of Seat Back Strength and Seat Belt Effectiveness in Rear End Impacts

1987-11-01
872214
The issues of front seat energy absorption and seat belt effectiveness are investigated first through the review of prior experimental and analytical studies of rear impact dynamics. These prior studies indicate that the current energy absorption characteristic of seats is a safety benefit. Prior efforts to construct a rigidized seat indicate that such designs are likely to be impractical due to excessive weight and cost. Additionally, these studies indicate that seat belts provide an important safety function in rear impacts. Static tests of production seats were conducted, added to an existing data base, and analyzed to better understand the strength and energy absorbing characteristics of production seats. Crash test results from the New Car Assessment Program as well as earlier test programs were analyzed to describe the response of occupants and seats in rear impact and the protective function of seat belts in such collisions.
Technical Paper

Crush Energy in Accident Reconstruction

1986-02-24
860371
Vehicle accident reconstruction methods based on deformation energy are argued to be an increasingly valuable tool to the accident reconstructionist, provided reliable data, reasonable analysis techniques, and sound engineering judgement accompany their use. The evolution of the CRASH model of vehicle structural response and its corresponding stiffness coefficients are reviewed. It is concluded that the deformation energy for an accident vehicle can be estimated using the CRASH model provided that test data specific to the accident vehicle is utilized. Published stiffness coefficients for vehicle size categories are generally not appropriate. For the purpose of estimating vehicle deformation energy, a straight-forward methodology is presented which consists of applying the results of staged crash tests. The process of translating crush profiles to estimates of vehicle deformation energies and velocities is also discussed.
Technical Paper

A Perspective on Automobile Crash Fires

1985-02-25
850092
The relatively rare occurrence of injury or fatality in fuel-fed fires has received considerable attention in automotive safety rulemaking and products liability litigation. The literature related to fatalities associated with fire is confirmed by recent FARS data, and there are no reliable field data which confirm a need for further injury-reducing effect related to FMVSS 301. NHTSA has acknowledged this by removing crash fire rulemaking from its priorities plan. The police-reported crash fire data now available must be supplemented with in-depth investigation by trained teams before informed judgements can be made regarding further safety improvements with respect to crash fire injury.
Technical Paper

Injury and Intrusion in Side Impacts and Rollovers

1984-02-01
840403
The relationship between occupant crash injury and occupant compartment intrusion is seen in the perspectives of the velocity-time analysis and the NCSS statistical data for two important accident injury modes, lateral and rollover collisions. Restraint system use, interior impacts, and vehicle design features are considered. Side impact intrusion is analyzed from physical principles and further demonstrated by reference to staged collisions and NCSS data. Recent publications regarding findings of the NCSS data for rollovers, as well as the NCSS data itself, are reviewed as a background for kinematic findings regarding occupant injury in rollovers with roof crush.
Technical Paper

Friction Applications in Accident Reconstruction

1983-02-01
830612
The determination of appropriate friction coefficient values is an important aspect of accident reconstruction. Tire-roadway friction values are highly dependent on a variety of physical factors. Factors such as tire design, side force limitations, road surface wetness, vehicle speed, and load shifting require understanding if useful reconstruction calculations are to be made. Tabulated experimental friction coefficient data are available, and may be improved upon in many situations by simple testing procedures. This paper presents a technical review of basic concepts and principles of friction as they apply to accident reconstruction and automobile safety. A brief review of test measurement methods is also presented, together with simple methods of friction measurement to obtain more precise values in many situations. This paper also recommends coefficient values for reconstruction applications other than tire- roadway forces.
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