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Technical Paper

Shape Optimization of Solid Structures Using the Growth-Strain Method (Application to Chassis Components)

This paper describes the shape optimization analysis of solid structures such as chassis components of a car, where the shape optimization problems of linearly elastic structures are treated to improve strength or to reduce weight of solid structures. The optimization method used here is the growth-strain method, and the shape optimization system is developed based on this method. The growth-strain method, which modifies a shape by generating bulk strain, was previously proposed for analysis of the uniform-strength shape. The generation law of the bulk strain is given as a function of a distributed parameter to be uniformed, such as von Mises stress. Two improved generation laws are presented. The first law makes the distributed parameter uniform while controlling the structural volume to a target value. The second law makes the distributed parameter uniform while controlling the maximum value of the distributed parameter to a target value.
Technical Paper

Structural Joint Stiffness of Automotive Body

An analysis of the static behavior of T-shaped joint is presented. Advanced testings by laser holography and infrared ray stress wave analyzers verified the surface deformation and the stress concentration of joint area, which are very important factors of thin-walled joint stiffness. The definition of structural joint stiffness is attempted, and the relationship between structural joint stiffness and sizes(dimension) of the constructing members is obtained in case of a thin-walled T-shaped member with rectangular cross section. The parametric study to accomplish weight reduction, while maintaining the necessary structural joint stiffness, is described in case of Rocker to Center pillar. The numerical analysis of body structure considering the structural joint stiffness shows better accuracy as compared with the analysis with the joint assumed rigid.
Technical Paper

A Study on a Simulation of a Head Form Impact Against Plastic Plates

A Finite Element Method (FEM) simulation was conducted to predict energy-absorbing characteristics in an impact of a head form against plastic plates. Static and dynamic material tests were conducted in order to determine material properties of the plastics. The properties were applied in an explicit FEM code. The FEM results were validated through the impact tests by the head form against the same plastic plates. It was proved that the FEM could simulate the test result well, when the precise material properties were introduced in the simulation. The method can be expected to be available to predict energy-absorbing characteristics during the impact by the head form against automobile plastic components such as shell portions of instrument panels.