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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

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

An Experimental Examination of J-Turn and Fishhook Maneuvers That May Induce On-Road, Untripped, Light Vehicle Rollover

2003-03-03
2003-01-1008
Phase IV of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) rollover research program was performed in 2001, starting in the spring and continuing through the fall. The objective of this phase was to obtain the data needed to select a limited set of maneuvers capable of assessing light vehicle rollover resistance. Five Characterization maneuvers and eight Rollover Resistance maneuvers were evaluated [1]. This paper is “Volume 1” of a two-paper account of the research used to develop dynamic maneuver tests for rollover resistance ratings. Test procedures and results from one Characterization maneuver (the Slowly Increasing Steer maneuver) and four Rollover Resistance maneuvers are discussed (the NHTSA J-Turn, Fishhook 1a, Fishhook 1b, and Nissan Fishhook). Details regarding NHTSA's assessment of the Consumers Union Short Course (CUSC), ISO 3888 Part 2, Ford Path Corrected Limit Lane Change (PCL LC), and Open-Loop Pseudo Double Lane Changes are available in “Volume 2” [2].
Technical Paper

An Experimental Examination of Double Lane Change Maneuvers That May Induce On-Road, Untripped, Light Vehicle Rollover

2003-03-03
2003-01-1009
Phase IV of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) rollover research program was performed during the spring through fall of 2001. The objective of this phase was to obtain the data needed to select a limited set of maneuvers capable of assessing light vehicle rollover resistance. Five Characterization maneuvers and eight Rollover Resistance maneuvers were evaluated [1]. This paper is “Volume 2” of a two-paper account of the research used to develop dynamic maneuver tests for rollover resistance ratings. Test procedures and results from four Rollover Resistance maneuvers are presented. The Consumers Union Short Course (CUSC), ISO 3888 Part 2, Ford Path Corrected Limit Lane Change (PCL LC), and Open-Loop Pseudo Double Lane Changes are discussed. Details regarding the NHTSA J-Turn, and the three fishhook maneuvers are available in “Volume 1” [2].
Technical Paper

Effects of Outriggers on Dynamic Rollover Resistance Maneuvers - Results from Phase V of NHTSA's Light Vehicle Rollover Research Program

2003-03-03
2003-01-1011
This paper describes the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) efforts to determine how different outrigger designs can affect J-Turn and Road Edge Recovery test maneuver outcome. Data were collected during tests performed with three different outrigger designs (made from aluminum, carbon fiber, and titanium) having different physical properties (geometry and weight). Four sport utility vehicles were tested: a 2001 Chevrolet Blazer, 2001 Toyota 4Runner, 2001 Ford Escape, and a 1999 Mercedes ML320. The 4Runner and ML320 were each equipped with electronic stability control, however the systems were disabled for the tests performed in this study. A detailed description of the testing performed and the results obtained are discussed. From the results, a comparison of how the three outrigger designs affected the test results is provided.
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

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

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

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

Comparison of Vehicle Structural Integrity and Occupant Injury Potential in Full-frontal and Offset-frontal Crash Tests

2000-03-06
2000-01-0879
The frontal crash standard in the USA specifies that the full front of a vehicle impact a rigid barrier. Subsequently, the European Union developed a frontal crash standard that requires 40 percent of the front of a vehicle to impact a deformable barrier. The present study conducted paired crashes of vehicles using the full-frontal barrier procedure and the 40 percent offset deformable barrier procedure. In part, the study was to examine the feasibility of adding an offset test procedure to the frontal crash standard in the USA. Frontal-offset and full-frontal testing was conducted using both the mid-size (50th percentile male Hybrid III) and the small stature (5th percentile female Hybrid III) dummies. Five vehicle models were used in the testing: Dodge Neon, Toyota Camry, Ford Taurus, Chevrolet Venture and Ford Contour. In the crash tests, all dummies were restrained with the available safety belt systems and frontal air bags.
Technical Paper

Reducing the Risk of Driver Injury from Common Steering Control Devices in Frontal Collisions

1999-03-01
1999-01-0759
Steering control devices are used by people who have difficulty gripping the steering wheel. These devices have projections that may extend up to 14 cm toward the occupant. Testing indicated that contact with certain larger steering control devices with tall rigid projections could severely injure a driver in a frontal collision. In order to reduce this injury risk, an alternative, less injurious design was developed and tested. This design, which included replacing unyielding aluminum projections with compliant plastic ones, produced significantly lower peak contact pressure and less damage to the chest of a cadaver test subject, while maintaining the strength necessary to be useful.
Technical Paper

Reverse Engineering Method for Developing Passenger Vehicle Finite Element Models

1999-03-01
1999-01-0083
A methodology to develop full-vehicle representation in the form of a finite element model for crashworthiness studies has been evolved. Detailed finite element models of two passenger vehicles - 1995 Chevy Lumina and 1994 Dodge Intrepid have been created. The models are intended for studying the vehicle’s behavior in full frontal, frontal offset and side impact collisions. These models are suitable for evaluating vehicle performance and occupant safety in a wide variety of impact situations, and are also suitable for part and material substitution studies to support PNGV (Partnership for New Generation of Vehicles) research. The geometry for these models was created by careful scanning and digitizing of the entire vehicle. High degree of detail is captured in the BIW, the front-end components and other areas involved in frontal, frontal offset and side impact on the driver’s side.
Technical Paper

Driver Crash Avoidance Behavior with ABS in an Intersection Incursion Scenario on Dry Versus Wet Pavement

1999-03-01
1999-01-1288
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has developed its Light Vehicle Antilock Brake Systems (ABS) Research Program in an effort to determine the cause (s) of the apparent increase in fatal single-vehicle run-off-road crashes as vehicles undergo a transition from conventional brakes to ABS. As part of this program, NHTSA conducted research examining driver crash avoidance behavior and the effects of ABS on drivers' ability to avoid a collision in a crash-imminent situation. The study described here was conducted on a test track under dry and wet pavement conditions to examine the effects of ABS versus conventional brakes, ABS brake pedal feedback level, and ABS instruction on driver behavior and crash avoidance performance. This study found that drivers do tend to brake and steer in realistic crash avoidance situations and that excessive steering can occur.
Technical Paper

Deployment of Air Bags into the Thorax of an Out-of-Position Dummy

1999-03-01
1999-01-0764
The air bag has proven effective in reducing fatalities in frontal crashes with estimated decreases ranging from 11% to 30% depending on the size of the vehicle [IIHS-1995, Kahane-1996]. At the same time, some air bag designs have caused fatalities when front-seat passengers have been in close proximity to the deploying air bag [Kleinberger-1997]. The objective of this study was to develop an accurate and repeatable out-of-position test fixture to study the deployment of air bags into out-of-position occupants. Tests were performed with a 5th percentile female Hybrid III dummy and studied air bag loading on the thorax using draft ISO-2 out-of-position (OOP) occupant positioning. Two different interpretations of the ISO-2 positioning were used in this study. The first, termed Nominal ISO-2, placed the chin on the steering wheel with the spine parallel to the steering wheel.
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