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Technical Paper

The Causal Relationship between Wheel Rim Gouging Forces on Roadway Surfaces and Rollover Crashes

There has been a general consensus in the scientific literature that a rim gouging, not scraping, into a roadway surface generates very high forces which can cause a vehicle to overturn in some situations. However, a paper published in 2004 attempts to minimize the forces created during wheel rim gouging and the effect on vehicle rollover. This paper relied largely on heavily filtered lateral acceleration data and discounted additional test runs by the authors and NHTSA that did not support the supposed conclusions. This paper will discuss the effect of rim gouging using accepted scientific methods, including full vehicle testing where vehicle accelerations were measured during actual rim gouging events and static testing of side forces exerted by wheels mounted on a moving test fixture. The data analyzed in this paper clearly shows that forces created by rim gouges on pavement can be thousands of Newtons and can contribute to vehicle rollover.
Journal Article

Technical Analysis of a Proposed Shock Absorber Design Standard

One important part of the vehicle design process is suspension design and tuning. This is typically performed by design engineers, experienced expert evaluators, and assistance from vehicle dynamics engineers and their computer simulation tools. Automotive suspensions have two primary functions: passenger and cargo isolation and vehicle control. Suspension design, kinematics, compliance, and damping, play a key role in those primary functions and impact a vehicles ride, handling, steering, and braking dynamics. The development and tuning of a vehicle kinematics, compliance, and damping characteristic is done by expert evaluators who perform a variety of on road evaluations under different loading configurations and on a variety of road surfaces. This “tuning” is done with a focus on meeting certain target characteristics for ride, handling, and steering One part of this process is the development and tuning of the damping characteristics of the shock absorbers.
Technical Paper

A Mainstream Test Methodology for Developing a Vehicle Equipped with an Electronic Stability Control System

There have been many articles published in the last decade or so concerning the components of an electronic stability control (ESC) system, as well as numerous statistical studies that attempt to predict the effectiveness of such systems relative to crash involvement. The literature however is free from papers that discuss how engineers might develop such systems in order to achieve desired steering, handling, and stability performance. This task is complicated by the fact that stability control systems are very complex and their designs and what they can do have changed considerably over the years. These systems also differ from manufacturer to manufacturer and from vehicle to vehicle in a given maker of automobiles. In terms of ESC hardware, differences can include all the components as well as the addition or absence of roll rate sensors or active steering gears to name a few.
Journal Article

Objective Measurement of Vehicle Steering and Handling Performance When a Tire Loses Its Air

There have been several recent articles published concerning the effect of a tire tread separation on vehicle handling, but lately the literature has been silent on the situation where a tire airs out. This paper studies how various vehicles steer and handle during and after a tire deflates while the vehicle is traveling at speed. Utility vehicles, pickup trucks, and vans were tested by deflating front and rear tires. The air out condition was created by using a special test device that fired a twelve gauge shotgun shell at the sidewall of a tire while the vehicle was traveling at freeway speeds. The vehicles were instrumented with on board video equipment and a computer with transducers to measure both driver inputs and vehicle responses during the testing. The results show that a rapid tire air out creates a slight pull to the side of the deflated tire which then requires a small corrective steer to maintain a straight ahead course.
Technical Paper

Effect of Water Depth and Translational Velocity on Tire Force and Moment Characteristics

It is well known that tire force and moment properties are affected by numerous design variables such as tire size, type, compounding, and construction. It is also true that environmental conditions such as rain, snow, or road surface type can alter the cornering capacity of a tire. In this study, specific environmental parameters related to water on the roadway are varied to study the effects on the force and moment properties of modern radial tires. The parameters under study included translational velocity and water depth during standard sweep testing at two different vertical loads. The force and moment characteristics of seven different tires were tested at the Calspan Tire Research Facility in Buffalo, New York. The slip angle sweep tests were conducted on the Flat Trac tire machine at various belt speeds, normal loads, and water depths.
Technical Paper

Comparative Dynamic Analysis of Tire Tread Belt Detachments and Stepped Diameter (“Lumpy”) Tires

In this study, tests were performed with modified tires at the right rear location on a solid axle sport utility vehicle to compare vehicle inputs and responses from both: (1) staged tire tread belt detachments, and (2) stepped diameter (“lumpy”) tires. Lumpy tires consist of equal size sections of tread that are vulcanized at equidistant locations around the outer circumference of the tire casing. Some have used lumpy tires in attempt to model the force and displacement inputs created by a tire tread belt separation. Four configurations were evaluated for the lumpy tires: 1-Lump, 2-Lump (2 lengths), and 3-Lump.
Technical Paper

Vehicle Response Comparison to Tire Tread Separations Induced by Circumferentially Cut and Distressed Tires

In this study, tests were performed with modified tires at the right rear location on a solid rear axle sport utility vehicle to compare the vehicle inputs from both: (1) tire tread belt detachments staged by circumferentially cut tires, and (2) a tire tread detachment staged by distressing a tire in a laboratory environment. The forces and moments that transfer through the road wheel were measured at the right and left rear wheel locations using wheel force transducers; displacements were measured between the rear axle and the frame at the shock absorber mounting locations, ride height displacements were measured at the four corners of the vehicle, and accelerations were measured on the rear axle. Onboard vehicle accelerations and velocities were measured as well. The data shows that the tire tread belt detachments prepared by circumferentially cut tires and distressed tires have similar inputs to the vehicle.
Technical Paper

An Analysis of Yaw Inducing Drag Forces Imparted During Tire Tread Belt Detachments

In this study, tests were performed to understand the effects of asymmetric longitudinal forces on vehicle response which may be created in certain staged partial tire tread belt detachment tests. In a very small number of tests performed by others, tires cut to simulate partial tire tread belt detachments created longitudinal drag forces at the separating tire that induced substantial vehicle yaw. This drag force and yaw response are independent of vehicle type and suspension type; they are created by the separating tire tread interacting with the road surface and / or vehicle. Similar yaw inducing drag forces are further demonstrated by applying braking to only the right rear wheel location of an instrumented test vehicle. It is shown that vehicle yaw response results from this longitudinal force as opposed to vertical axle motion.