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Technical Paper

A Hybrid Material Automotive Bumper Beam for Enhanced Safety of Both Occupant and Pedestrian

In vehicle accident, the bumper beam generally requires high stiffness for sufficient survival space for occupants while it may cause serious pedestrian lower extremity injuries. The aim of this study is to promote an aluminum-steel hybrid material double-hat bumper to meet the comprehensive requirements. The proposed hybrid bumper beam is comprised of an aluminum alloy upper hat and a high strength steel (HSS) lower hat. The two hats are riveted together by steel rivets. The hybrid bumper is designed to improve the frontal crash and pedestrian protection performances in collision accidents. In a low-velocity impact scenario with a pedestrian, the aluminum upper hat helps to reduce the lower extremity injuries of the pedestrian, while in a high-velocity impact case with a rigid object, e.g., a tree or electric pole, the HSS lower hat could prevent excessive intrusion into the engine compartment and the passenger compartment, so as to prevent occupant injury.
Journal Article

Crushing Analysis and Lightweight Design of Tapered Tailor Welded Hybrid Material Tubes under Oblique Impact

The increasing demand for lightweight design of the whole vehicle has raised critical weight reduction targets for crash components such as front rails without deteriorating their crash performances. To this end the last few years have witnessed a huge growth in vehicle body structures featuring hybrid materials including steel and aluminum alloys. In this work, a type of tapered tailor-welded tube (TTWT) made of steel and aluminum alloy hybrid materials was proposed to maximize the specific energy absorption (SEA) and to minimize the peak crushing force (PCF) in an oblique crash scenario. The hybrid tube was found to be more robust than the single material tubes under oblique impacts using validated finite element (FE) models. Compared with the aluminum alloy tube and the steel tube, the hybrid tube can increase the SEA by 46.3% and 86.7%, respectively, under an impact angle of 30°.