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Journal Article

Method for Estimating Time to Collision at Braking in Real-World, Lead Vehicle Stopped Rear-End Crashes for Use in Pre-Crash System Design

2011-04-12
2011-01-0576
This study presents a method for determining the time to collision (TTC) at which a driver of the striking vehicle in a real-world, lead vehicle stopped (LVS) rear-end collision applied the brakes. The method employs real-world cases that were extracted from the National Automotive Sampling System / Crashworthiness Data System (NASS / CDS) years 2000 to 2009. Selected cases had an Event Data Recorder (EDR) recovered from the striking vehicle that contained pre-crash vehicle speed and brake application. Of 59 cases with complete EDR records, 12 cases (20%) of drivers appeared not to apply the brakes at all prior to the collision. The method was demonstrated using 47 rear-end cases in which there was driver braking. The average braking deceleration for those cases with sufficient vehicle speed information was found to be 0.52 g's. The average TTC that braking was initiated at was found to vary in the sample population from 1.1 to 1.4 seconds.
Technical Paper

Validation of a Driver Recovery Model Using Real-World Road Departure Cases

2013-04-08
2013-01-0723
Predicting driver response to road departure and attempted recovery is a challenging but essential need for estimating the benefits of active safety systems. One promising approach has been to mathematically model the driver steering and braking inputs during departure and recovery. The objective of this paper is to compare a model developed by Volvo, Ford, and UMRTI (VFU) through the Advanced Crash Avoidance Technologies (ACAT) Program against a set of real-world departure events. These departure events, collected by Hutchinson and Kennedy, include the vehicle's off road trajectory in 256 road departure events involving passenger vehicles. The VFU-ACAT model was exercised for left side road departures onto the median of a divided highway with a speed limit of 113 kph (70 mph). At low departure angles, the VFU-ACAT model underpredicted the maximum lateral and longitudinal distances when compared to the departure events measured by Hutchinson and Kennedy.
Journal Article

Characterization of Lane Departure Crashes Using Event Data Recorders Extracted from Real-World Collisions

2013-04-08
2013-01-0730
Lane Departure Warning (LDW) is a production active safety system that can warn drivers of an unintended departure. Critical in the design of LDW and other departure countermeasures is understanding pre-crash driver behavior in crashes. The objective of this study was to gain insight into pre-crash driver behavior in departure crashes using Event Data Recorders (EDRs). EDRs are units equipped on many passenger vehicles that are able to store vehicle data, including pre-crash data in many cases. This study used 256 EDRs that were downloaded from GM vehicles involved in real-world lane departure collisions. The crashes were investigated as part of the NHTSA's NASS/CDS database years 2000 to 2011. Nearly half of drivers (47%) made little or no change to their vehicle speed prior to the collision and slightly fewer decreased their speed (43%). Drivers who did not change speed were older (median age 41) compared to those who decreased speed (median age 27).
Technical Paper

Assessment of Heavy Vehicle EDR Technologies

2013-09-24
2013-01-2402
Heavy-vehicle event data recorders (HVEDRs) provide a source of temporal vehicle data just prior to, during, and for a short period after, an event. In the 1990s, heavy-vehicle (HV) engine manufacturers expanded the capabilities of engine control units (ECU) and engine control modules (ECM) to include the ability to record and store small amounts of parametric vehicle data. This advanced capability has had a significant impact on vehicle safety by helping law enforcement, engineers, and researchers reconstruct events of a vehicle crash and understand the details surrounding that vehicle crash. Today, EDR technologies have been incorporated into a wide range of heavy vehicle (HV) safety systems (e.g., crash mitigation systems, air bag control systems, and behavioral monitoring systems). However, the adoption of EDR technologies has not been uniform across all classes of HVs or their associated vehicle systems.
Technical Paper

Accuracy of Translations Obtained by 2013 GIT Tool on 2010-2012 Kia and Hyundai EDR Speed and Delta V Data in NCAP Tests

2014-04-01
2014-01-0502
Kia and Hyundai released publicly available tools in the spring of 2013 to read model year (MY) 2013 vehicle event data recorders (EDRs). By empirical testing, this study determined the tools also read data from some 2010-2012 models as EDRs were phased in by the manufacturer. Fifty-four (54) MY 2010-2012 airbag control module EDRs from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) crash tests were downloaded direct-to-module. The vehicles analyzed were exposed to frontal, side moving deformable barrier (MDB), and side pole tests. The EDR data was compared to the reference instrumentation for speed and Delta V data. Other data elements were also tabulated but are not evaluated for accuracy because they were not fully exercised during the crash tests, the reference instrumentation was not available, or they were outside the scope of this paper.
Technical Paper

Development of Auditory Warning Signals for Mitigating Heavy Truck Rear-End Crashes

2010-10-05
2010-01-2019
Rear-end crashes involving heavy trucks occur with sufficient frequency that they are a cause of concern within regulatory agencies. In 2006, there were approximately 23,500 rear-end crashes involving heavy trucks which resulted in 135 fatalities. As part of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's (FMCSA) goal of reducing the overall number of truck crashes, the Enhanced Rear Signaling (ERS) for Heavy Trucks project was developed to investigate methods to reduce or mitigate those crashes where a heavy truck has been struck from behind by another vehicle. Researchers also utilized what had been learned in the rear-end crash avoidance work with light vehicles that was conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) with Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) serving as the prime research organization. ERS crash countermeasures investigated included passive conspicuity markings, visual signals, and auditory signals.
Journal Article

Mitigating Heavy Truck Rear-End Crashes with the use of Rear-Lighting Countermeasures

2010-10-05
2010-01-2023
In 2006, there were approximately 23,500 rear-end crashes involving heavy trucks (i.e., gross vehicle weight greater than 4,536 kg). The Enhanced Rear Signaling (ERS) for Heavy Trucks project was developed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to investigate methods to reduce or mitigate those crashes where a heavy truck has been struck from behind by another vehicle. Visual warnings have been shown to be effective, assuming the following driver is looking directly at the warning display or has his/her eyes drawn to it. A visual warning can be placed where it is needed and it can be designed so that its meaning is nearly unambiguous. FMCSA contracted with the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) to investigate potential benefit of additional rear warning-light configurations as rear-end crash countermeasures for heavy trucks.
Journal Article

Biomechanical Response of the Human Face and Corresponding Biofidelity of the FOCUS Headform

2010-04-12
2010-01-1317
In order to evaluate a human surrogate, the human and surrogate response must be defined. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the response of cadaver subjects to blunt impacts to the frontal bone, nasal bone and maxilla. Force-displacement corridors were developed based on the impact response of each region. Variation in the force-displacement response of the cadaver subjects due to the occurrence of fracture and fracture severity was demonstrated. Additionally, impacts were performed at matched locations using the Facial and Ocular CountermeasUre Safety (FOCUS) headform. The FOCUS headform is capable of measuring forces imposed onto facial structures using internal load cells. Based on the tests performed in this study, the nasal region of the FOCUS headform was found to be the most sensitive to impact location. Due to a wide range in geometrical characteristics, the nasal impact response varied significantly, resulting in wide corridors for human response.
Technical Paper

Target Population for Injury Reduction from Pre-Crash Systems

2010-04-12
2010-01-0463
Pre-Crash Systems (PCS) integrate the features of active and passive safety systems to reduce both crash and injury severity. Upon detection of an impending collision, PCS can provide an early warning to the driver and activate automatic braking to reduce the crash severity for the subject vehicle. PCS can also activate the seatbelt pretensioners prior to impact. This paper identifies the opportunities for injury prevention in crash types for which PCS can be potentially activated. These PCS applicable crash types include rear-end crashes, single vehicle crashes into objects (trees, poles, structures, parked vehicles), and head-on crashes. PCS can benefit the occupants of both the striking and struck vehicle. In this paper, the opportunity for injury reduction in the struck vehicle is also tabulated. The study is based upon the analysis of approximately 20,000 frontal crash cases extracted from NASS / CDS 1997-2008.
Journal Article

Location-Aware Adaptive Vehicle Dynamics System: Concept Development

2014-04-01
2014-01-0121
One seminal question that faces a vehicle's driver (either human or computer) is predicting the capability of the vehicle as it encounters upcoming terrain. A Location-Aware Adaptive Vehicle Dynamics (LAAVD) System is developed to assist the driver in maintaining vehicle handling capabilities through various driving maneuvers. In contrast to current active safety systems, this system is predictive rather than reactive. This work provides the conceptual groundwork for the proposed system. The LAAVD System employs a predictor-corrector method in which the driver's input commands (throttle, brake, steering) and upcoming driving environment (terrain, traffic, weather) are predicted. An Intervention Strategy uses a novel measure of handling capability, the Performance Margin, to assess the need to intervene. The driver's throttle and brake control are modulated to affect desired changes to the Performance Margin in a manner that is minimally intrusive to the driver's control authority.
Journal Article

Fleetwide Safety Benefits of Production Forward Collision and Lane Departure Warning Systems

2014-04-01
2014-01-0166
Forward Collision Warning (FCW) and Lane Departure Warning (LDW) systems are two active safety systems that have recently been added to the U.S. New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) evaluation. Vehicles that pass confirmation tests may advertise the presence of FCW and LDW alongside the vehicle's star safety rating derived from crash tests. This paper predicts the number of crashes and injured drivers that could be prevented if all vehicles in the U.S. fleet were equipped with production FCW and/or LDW systems. Models of each system were developed using the test track data collected for 16 FCW and 10 LDW systems by the NCAP confirmation tests. These models were used in existing fleetwide benefits models developed for FCW and LDW. The 16 FCW systems evaluated could have potentially prevented between 9% and 53% of all rear-end collisions and prevented between 19% and 60% of injured (MAIS2+) drivers. Earlier warning times prevented more warnings and injuries.
Technical Paper

An Adaptive Vehicle Stability Control Algorithm Based on Tire Slip-Angle Estimation

2012-09-24
2012-01-2016
Active safety systems have become an essential part of today's vehicles including SUVs and LTVs. Although they have advanced in many aspects, there are still many areas that they can be improved. Especially being able to obtain information about tire-vehicle states (e.g. tire slip-ratio, tire slip-angle, tire forces, tire-road friction coefficient), would be significant due to the key role tires play in providing directional stability and control. This paper first presents the implementation strategy for a dynamic tire slip-angle estimation methodology using a combination of a tire based sensor and an observer system. The observer utilizes two schemes, first of which employs a Sliding Mode Observer to obtain lateral and longitudinal tire forces. The second step then utilizes the force information and outputs the tire slip-angle using a Luenberger observer and linearized tire model equations.
Journal Article

Field Relevance of the New Car Assessment Program Lane Departure Warning Confirmation Test

2012-04-16
2012-01-0284
The availability of active safety systems, such as Lane Departure Warning (LDW), has recently been added as a rating factor in the U.S. New Car Assessment Program (NCAP). The objective of this study is to determine the relevance of the NCAP LDW confirmation test to real-world road departure crashes. This study is based on data collected as part of supplemental crash reconstructions performed on 890 road departure collisions from the National Automotive Sampling System, Crashworthiness Data System (NASS/CDS). Scene diagrams and photographs were examined to determine the lane departure and lane marking characteristics not available in the original data. The results suggest that the LDW confirmation test captures many of the conditions observed in real-world road departures. For example, 40% of all single vehicle collisions in the dataset involved a drift-out-of-lane type of departures represented by the test.
Journal Article

Tire Traction of Commercial Vehicles on Icy Roads

2014-09-30
2014-01-2292
Safety and minimal transit time are vital during transportation of essential commodities and passengers, especially in winter conditions. Icy roads are the worst driving conditions with the least available friction, leaving valuable cargo and precious human lives at stake. The study investigates the available friction at the tire-ice interface due to changes in key operational parameters. Experimental analysis of tractive performance of tires on ice was carried out indoor, using the terramechanics rig located at the Advanced Vehicle Dynamics Laboratory (AVDL) at Virginia Tech. The friction-slip ratio curves obtained from indoor testing were inputted into TruckSIM, defining tire behavior for various ice scenarios and then simulating performance of trucks on ice. The shortcomings of simulations in considering the effects of all the operational parameters result in differences between findings of indoor testing and truck performance simulations.
Journal Article

Validation of Event Data Recorders in High Severity Full‑Frontal Crash Tests

2013-04-08
2013-01-1265
This study evaluates the accuracy of 41 Event Data Recorders (EDR) extracted from model year 2012 General Motors, Chrysler, Ford, Honda, Mazda, Toyota, and Volvo vehicles subjected to New Car Assessment Program 56 kph full-frontal barrier crash tests. The approach was to evaluate (1) the vehicle longitudinal change in velocity or delta-V (ΔV) as measured by EDRs in comparison with the high-precision accelerometers mounted onboard test vehicles and (2) the accuracy of pre-crash speed, seatbelt buckle status, and frontal airbag deployment status. On average the absolute error for pre-crash speed between the EDR and reference instrumentation was only 0.58 kph, or 1.0% of the nominal impact speed. In all cases in which the EDRs recorded the seatbelt buckle status of the driver or right front passenger, the modules correctly reported that the occupants were buckled. EDRs reported airbag deployment correctly in all of the tests.
Technical Paper

Predicting Driving Postures and Seated Positions in SUVs Using a 3D Digital Human Modeling Tool

2008-06-17
2008-01-1856
3D digital human modeling (DHM) tools for vehicle packaging facilitate ergonomic design and evaluation based on anthropometry, comfort, and force analysis. It is now possible to quickly predict postures and positions for drivers with selected anthropometry based on ergonomics principles. Despite their powerful visual representation technology for human movements and postures, these tools are still questioned with regard to the validity of the output they provide, especially when predictions are made for different populations. Driving postures and positions of two populations (i.e. North Americans and Koreans) were measured in actual and mock-up SUVs to investigate postural differences and evaluate the results provided by a DHM tool. No difference in driving postures was found between different stature groups within the same population. Between the two populations, however, preferred angles differed for three joints (i.e., ankle, thigh, and hip).
Technical Paper

Investigation of Traumatic Brain Injuries Using the Next Generation of Simulated Injury Monitor (SIMon) Finite Element Head Model

2008-11-03
2008-22-0001
The objective of this study was to investigate potential for traumatic brain injuries (TBI) using a newly developed, geometrically detailed, finite element head model (FEHM) within the concept of a simulated injury monitor (SIMon). The new FEHM is comprised of several parts: cerebrum, cerebellum, falx, tentorium, combined pia-arachnoid complex (PAC) with cerebro-spinal fluid (CSF), ventricles, brainstem, and parasagittal blood vessels. The model's topology was derived from human computer tomography (CT) scans and then uniformly scaled such that the mass of the brain represents the mass of a 50th percentile male's brain (1.5 kg) with the total head mass of 4.5 kg. The topology of the model was then compared to the preliminary data on the average topology derived from Procrustes shape analysis of 59 individuals. Material properties of the various parts were assigned based on the latest experimental data.
Technical Paper

Upper Extremity Interaction With a Helicopter Side Airbag: Injury Criteria for Dynamic Hyperextension of the Female Elbow Joint

2004-11-01
2004-22-0007
This paper describes a three part analysis to characterize the interaction between the female upper extremity and a helicopter cockpit side airbag system and to develop dynamic hyperextension injury criteria for the female elbow joint. Part I involved a series of 10 experiments with an original Army Black Hawk helicopter side airbag. A 5th percentile female Hybrid III instrumented upper extremity was used to demonstrate side airbag upper extremity loading. Two out of the 10 tests resulted in high elbow bending moments of 128 Nm and 144 Nm. Part II included dynamic hyperextension tests on 24 female cadaver elbow joints. The energy source was a drop tower utilizing a three-point bending configuration to apply elbow bending moments matching the previously conducted side airbag tests. Post-test necropsy showed that 16 of the 24 elbow joint tests resulted in injuries.
Technical Paper

Comparison of ATD to PMHS Response in the Under-Body Blast Environment

2015-11-09
2015-22-0017
A blast buck (Accelerative Loading Fixture, or ALF) was developed for studying underbody blast events in a laboratory-like setting. It was designed to provide a high-magnitude, high-rate, vertical loading environment for cadaver and dummy testing. It consists of a platform with a reinforcing cage that supports adjustable-height rigid seats for two crew positions. The platform has a heavy frame with a deformable floor insert. Fourteen tests were conducted using fourteen PMHS (post mortem human surrogates) and the Hybrid III ATD (Anthropomorphic Test Device). Tests were conducted at two charge levels: enhanced and mild. The surrogates were tested with and without PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), and in two different postures: nominal (knee angle of 90°) and obtuse (knee angle of 120°). The ALF reproduces damage in the PMHS commensurate with injuries experienced in theater, with the most common damage being to the pelvis and ankle.
Technical Paper

Effects of Commercial Truck Configuration on Roll Stability in Roundabouts

2015-09-29
2015-01-2741
This paper presents the results of a study on the effect of truck configurations on the roll stability of commercial trucks in roundabouts that are commonly used in urban settings with increasing frequency. The special geometric layout of roundabouts can increase the risk of rollover in high-CG vehicles, even at low speeds. Relatively few in-depth studies have been conducted on rollover stability of commercial trucks in roundabouts. This study uses a commercially available software, TruckSim®, to perform simulations on four truck configurations, including a single-unit truck, a WB-67 semi-truck, the combination of a tractor with double 28-ft trailers, and the combination of a tractor with double 40-ft trailers. A single-lane and multilane roundabout are modeled, both with a truck apron. Three travel movements through the roundabouts are considered, including right turn, through-movement, and left turn.
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