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Technical Paper

Analysis of Human Driver Behavior in Highway Cut-in Scenarios

2017-03-28
2017-01-1402
The rapid development of driver assistance systems, such as lane-departure warning (LDW) and lane-keeping support (LKS), along with widely publicized reports of automated vehicle testing, have created the expectation for an increasing amount of vehicle automation in the near future. As these systems are being phased in, the coexistence of automated vehicles and human-driven vehicles on roadways will be inevitable and necessary. In order to develop automated vehicles that integrate well with those that are operated in traditional ways, an appropriate understanding of human driver behavior in normal traffic situations would be beneficial. Unlike many research studies that have focused on collision-avoidance maneuvering, this paper analyzes the behavior of human drivers in response to cut-in vehicles moving at similar speeds. Both automated and human-driven vehicles are likely to encounter this scenario in daily highway driving.
Technical Paper

Field Demonstration of a Camera/Video Imaging System for Heavy Vehicles - Driver Lane Change Performance Preliminary Results

2010-10-05
2010-01-2020
On-board Camera/Video Imaging Systems (C/VISs) for heavy vehicles display live images to the driver of selected areas to the sides, and in back of the truck's exterior using displays inside the truck cabin. They provide a countermeasure to blind-spot related crashes by allowing drivers to see objects not ordinarily visible by a typical mirror configuration, and to better judge the clearance between the trailer and an adjacent vehicle when changing lanes. The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute is currently investigating commercial motor vehicle (CMV) driver performance with C/VISs through a technology field demonstration sponsored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Data collection, which consists of recording twelve CMV drivers performing their daily employment duties with and without a C/VIS for four months, is currently underway.
Technical Paper

Rear Seat Occupant Safety: An Investigation of a Progressive Force-Limiting, Pretensioning 3-Point Belt System Using Adult PMHS in Frontal Sled Tests

2009-11-02
2009-22-0002
Rear seat adult occupant protection is receiving increased attention from the automotive safety community. Recent anthropomorphic test device (ATD) studies have suggested that it may be possible to improve kinematics and reduce injuries to rear seat occupants in frontal collisions by incorporating shoulder-belt force-limiting and pretensioning (FL+PT) technologies into rear seat 3-point belt restraints. This study seeks to further investigate the feasibility and potential kinematic benefits of a FL+PT rear seat, 3-point belt restraint system in a series of 48 kmh frontal impact sled tests (20 g, 80 ms sled acceleration pulse) performed with post mortem human surrogates (PMHS). Three PMHS were tested with a 3-point belt restraint with a progressive (two-stage) force limiting and pretensioning retractor in a sled buck representing the rear seat occupant environment of a 2004 mid-sized sedan.
Journal Article

Preliminary Evaluation Methodology in Front-Front Vehicle Compatibility

2008-04-14
2008-01-0814
The injury outcome of a front-front two-vehicle crash will be a function of crash-specific, vehicle-specific, and occupant-specific parameters. This paper focuses on a preliminary methodology that was used to evaluate the potential for benefits in making vehicle-specific changes to improve the compatibility of light vehicles across the fleet. In particular, the effect on injury rates of matching vehicle frontal stiffness was estimated. The front-front crash data for belted drivers in the lighter vehicles in the crash from ten years of NASS-CDS data were examined. The frontal stiffness of each vehicle was calculated using data taken during full frontal rigid barrier tests for the U.S. New Car Assessment Program (NCAP), and only crashes coded in the CDS as “no override” were considered.
Technical Paper

Simulator Study of Heavy Truck Air Disc Brake Effectiveness During Emergency Braking

2008-04-14
2008-01-1498
In crashes between heavy trucks and light vehicles, most of the fatalities are the occupants of the light vehicle. A reduction in heavy truck stopping distance should lead to a reduction in the number of crashes, the severity of crashes, and consequently the numbers of fatalities and injuries. This study made use of the National Advanced Driving Simulator (NADS). NADS is a full immersion driving simulator used to study driver behavior as well as driver-vehicle reactions and responses. The vehicle dynamics model of the existing heavy truck on NADS had been modified with the creation of two additional brake models. The first was a modified S-cam (larger drums and shoes) and the second was an air-actuated disc brake system. A sample of 108 CDL-licensed drivers was split evenly among the simulations using each of the three braking systems. The drivers were presented with four different emergency stopping situations.
Technical Paper

Closed Loop Steering System Model for the National Advanced Driving Simulator

2004-03-08
2004-01-1072
This paper presents the details of the model for the physical steering system used on the National Advanced Driving Simulator. The system is basically a hardware-in-the-loop (steering feedback motor and controls) steering system coupled with the core vehicle dynamics of the simulator. The system's torque control uses cascaded position and velocity feedback and is controlled to provide steering feedback with variable stiffness and dynamic properties. The reference model, which calculates the desired value of the torque, is made of power steering torque, damping function torque, torque from tires, locking limit torque, and driver input torque. The model also provides a unique steering dead-band function that is important for on-center feel. A Simulink model of the hardware/software is presented and analysis of the simulator steering system is provided.
Technical Paper

NHTSA's Frontal Offset Research Program

2004-03-08
2004-01-1169
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is conducting a research program to investigate the use of the 40 percent offset deformable barrier (ODB) crash test procedure to reduce death and injury, in particular debilitating lower extremity injuries in frontal offset collisions. This paper presents the results of 22 ODB crash tests conducted with 50th percentile male and 5th percentile female Hybrid III (HIII) dummies fitted with advanced lower legs, Thor-Lx/HIIIr and Thor-FLx/HIIIr, to assess the potential for debilitating and costly lower limb injuries. This paper also begins to investigate the implications that the ODB test procedure may have for fleet compatibility by evaluating the results from vehicle-to-vehicle crash tests.
Technical Paper

Experimental Steering Feel Performance Measures

2004-03-08
2004-01-1074
This paper discusses techniques for estimating steering feel performance measures for on-center and off-center driving. Weave tests at different speeds are used to get on-center performances for a 1994 Ford Taurus, a 1998 Chevrolet Malibu, and a 1997 Jeep Cherokee. New concepts analyzing weave tests are added, specifically, the difference of the upper and lower curves of the hysteresis and their relevance to driver load feel. For the 1997 Jeep Cherokee, additional tests were done to determine steering on-center transition properties, steering flick tests, and the transfer function of handwheel torque feel to handwheel steering input. This transfer function provides steering system stiffness in the frequency domain. The frequency domain analysis is found to be a unique approach for characterizing handwheel feel, in that it provides a steering feel up to maximum steering rate possible by the drivers.
Technical Paper

Analysis of Braking and Steering Performance in Car-Following Scenarios

2003-03-03
2003-01-0283
This paper presents recent results of on-going research to build new maps of driver performance in car-following situations. The novel performance map is comprised of four driving states: low risk, conflict, near crash, and crash imminent - which correspond to advisory warning, crash imminent warning, and crash mitigation countermeasures. The paper addresses two questions dealing with the approach to quantify the boundaries between the driving states: (1) Do the quantified boundaries strongly depend on the dynamic scenario encountered in the driving environment? and (2) Do the quantified boundaries vary between steering and braking driver responses? Specifically, braking and steering driver performances are examined in two car-following scenarios: lead vehicle stopped and lead vehicle moving at lower constant speed.
Technical Paper

Design Considerations for a Compatibility Test Procedure

2002-03-04
2002-01-1022
A major focus of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) vehicle compatibility and aggressivity research program is the development of a laboratory test procedure to evaluate compatibility. This paper is written to explain the associated goals, issues, and design considerations and to review the preliminary results from this ongoing research program. One of NHTSA's activities supporting the development of a test procedure involves investigating the use of an mobile deformable barrier (MDB) into vehicle test to evaluate both the self-protection (crashworthiness) and the partner-protection (compatibility) of the subject vehicle. For this development, the MDB is intended to represent the median or expected crash partner. This representiveness includes such vehicle characteristics as weight, size, and frontal stiffness. This paper presents distributions of vehicle measurements based on 1996 fleet registration data.
Technical Paper

Air bag crash investigations

2001-06-04
2001-06-0009
The performance of air bags, as an occupant protection system, is of high interest to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA or Agency). Since 1972, the NHTSA has operated a Special Crash Investigations (SCI) program which provides in-depth crash investigation data on new and rapidly changing occupant protection technologies in real-world crashes. The Agency uses these in-depth data to evaluate vehicle safety systems and form a basis for rulemaking actions. The data are also used by the automotive industry and other organizations to evaluate the performance of motor vehicle occupant protection systems such as air bags. This paper presents information from NHTSA's SCI program concerning crash investigations on air-bag-equipped vehicles. The paper focus is on data collection and some general findings in air bag crash investigations including: air-bag-related fatal and life-threatening injuries; side air bags; redesigned air bags and advanced air bags.
Technical Paper

Large school bus safety restraint evaluation

2001-06-04
2001-06-0158
This paper describes ongoing research conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to evaluate the potential of safety restraints on large school buses. School bus transportation is one of the safest forms of transportation in the United States. Large school buses provide protection because of their visibility, size, and weight, as compared to other types of motor vehicles. Additionally, they are required to meet minimum Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) mandating compartmentalized seating, emergency exits, roof crush and fuel system integrity, and minimum bus body joint strength.
Technical Paper

NHTSA'S crashworthiness modelling activities

2001-06-04
2001-06-0178
NHTSA uses a variety of computer modelling techniques to develop and evaluate test methods and mitigation concepts, and to estimate safety benefits for many of NHTSA's research activities. Computer modeling has been particularly beneficial for estimating safety benefits where often very little data are available. Also modeling allows researchers to augment test data by simulating crashes over a wider range of conditions than would otherwise be feasible. These capabilities are used for a wide range of projects from school bus to frontal, side, and rollover research programs. This paper provides an overview of these activities. NHTSA's most extensive modeling research involves developing finite element and articulated mass models to evaluate a range of vehicles and crash environments. These models are being used to develop a fleet wide systems model for evaluating compatibility issues.
Technical Paper

NHTSA'S research program for vehicle aggressivity and fleet compatibility

2001-06-04
2001-06-0179
This paper presents an overview of NHTSA's vehicle aggressivity and fleet compatibility research activities. This research program is being conducted in close cooperation with the International Harmonized Research Agenda (IHRA) compatibility research group. NHTSA is monitoring the changing vehicle mix in the U.S. fleet, analyzing crash statistics, and evaluating any implications that these changes may have for U.S. occupant safety. NHTSA is also continuing full-scale crash testing to develop a better understanding of vehicle compatibility and to investigate test methods to assess vehicle compatibility.
Technical Paper

Simulations of large school bus safety restraints~NHTSA

2001-06-04
2001-06-0226
This paper describes computer crash simulations performed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) under the current research and testing activities on large school bus safety restraints. The simulations of a frontal rigid barrier test and comparative dynamic sled testing for compartmentalization, lap belt, and lap/shoulder belt restraint strategies are presented. School bus transportation is one of the safest forms of transportation in the United States. School age children transported in school buses are safer than children transported in motor vehicles of any other type. Large school buses provide protection because of their size and weight. Further, they must meet minimum Federal motor vehicle safety standards (FMVSSs) mandating compartmentalized seating, improved emergency exits, stronger roof structures and fuel systems, and better bus body joint strength.
Technical Paper

Pedestrian head impact testing and PCDS reconstructions

2001-06-04
2001-06-0184
Pedestrian research and testing at the NHTSA Vehicle Research and Test Center has recently focused on assessment of proposed ISO and EEVC head impact test procedures, and extension of these procedures to additional vehicle frontal surfaces. In addition to test parameter sensitivity evaluation, reconstruction of PCDS (Pedestrian Crash Data Study) cases with laboratory impact tests and computer simulations has been conducted. This paper presents the results of this research.
Technical Paper

PERFORMANCE EVALUATION OF DUAL STAGE PASSENGER AIR BAG SYSTEMS

2001-06-04
2001-06-0190
A research program was initiated to evaluate the performance of prototype dual stage passenger air bags in terms of both restraint system performance and deployment aggressivity for different size occupants. Variations in inflator partitions, vent hole diameter sizes, and deployment timing were examined. High speed unbelted sled tests were conducted with both 50th percentile male and 5th percentile female Hybrid III adult dummies at 48 kmph; and belted sled tests were conducted at 56 kmph. Low risk deployment tests with child dummies were conducted to evaluate air bag aggressivity. Overall, it was concluded that the dual stage air bag systems under evaluation had improved performance over the baseline single stage systems in terms of providing high speed protection while reducing aggressivity to out-of-position occupants; however, some dual stage systems may require additional occupant detection methodologies to suppress or control inflation.
Technical Paper

Evaluation of injury risk from side impact air bags

2001-06-04
2001-06-0091
Several thoracic and head protection side impact air bag systems (SAB) are emerging in the U.S. market and are projected to become prevalent in the fleet. These systems appear to offer superior protection in side crashes. However, concerns have been raised as to their potential for causing injury to out-of-position (OOP) occupants. This paper describes the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) program for evaluation of the SAB systems for OOP occupants and provides a status report on the current research. The industry's Side Airbag Out-of- Position Injury Technical Working Group (TWG) recommended procedures for 3-year-old and 6-year-old occupants are evaluated. Additional test procedures are described to augment the TWG procedures for these occupants and 12-month- old infants.
Technical Paper

NHTSA's Compatibility Research Program Update

2001-03-05
2001-01-1167
This paper provides an update of NHTSA's research activities in vehicle compatibility and aggressivity. This paper pres ents new ly initiated efforts underw ay to develop test assessment meth odologie s intende d to evalua te vehic le compatibility. The rigid barrier load cell data collected from 18 years of the agency's New Car Assessment Program testing are reviewed to e valuate potentia l test measures that may be used to evaluate a vehic le's compatibility in vehicle-to-vehicle crashes. These parameters are then evaluated using a series of vehicle-to-vehic le and m oving deformable ba rrier (MDB)-to -veh icle tests. In these tests, the face of the MDB has been instrumented with an array of load cells to compute test measures. This study is part of NHTSA's ongoing compatib ility research program and is being coordinated with the IHRA compatibility group.
Technical Paper

Field Operational Test Results of An Automated Collision Notification System

2000-11-01
2000-01-C041
This paper describes a Field Operational Test (FOT) of an Automated Collision Notification (ACN) System, a new way to provide definitive pre- hospital medical care to people injured in motor vehicle crashes. This FOT is part of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA's) research being conducted under the U.S. Department of Transportation's Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) program. Management of the program is by the Office of Vehicle Safety Research in NHTSA. The ACN FOT is a demonstration of the application of advanced technology for the improvement of pre-hospital emergency care for motor-vehicle crash victims. The test, involving approximately 850 volunteers' vehicles, was conducted in rural Western New York State. A partnership of local public agencies and private corporations, led by Veridian, Inc., performed the test.
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