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Technical Paper

Heavy Tractor-Trailer Vehicle Dynamics Modeling for the National Advanced Driving Simulator

This paper presents the development of a real-time vehicle dynamics model of the heavy tractor-trailer combination used in the National Advanced Driving Simulator. The model includes multi-body dynamics of the tractor and trailer chassis, suspension, and steering mechanisms. The rigid body model is formulated using recursive multi-body dynamics code. This model is augmented with subsystem models that include tires, leaf springs, brakes, steering system, and aerodynamic drag. This paper also presents parameter measurement and estimations used to set up the model. Also included are models for brake fade, steering torque resistance, and defective tires.
Technical Paper

Validation and Enhancement of a Heavy Truck Simulation Model with an Electronic Stability Control Model

Validation was performed on an existing heavy truck vehicle dynamics computer model with roll stability control (RSC). The first stage in this validation was to compare the response of the simulated tractor to that of the experimental tractor. By looking at the steady-state gains of the tractor, adjustments were made to the model to more closely match the experimental results. These adjustments included suspension and steering compliances, as well as auxiliary roll moment modifications. Once the validation of the truck tractor was completed for the current configuration, the existing 53-foot box trailer model was added to the vehicle model. The next stage in experimental validation for the current tractor-trailer model was to incorporate suspension compliances and modify the auxiliary roll stiffness to more closely model the experimental response of the vehicle. The final validation stage was to implement some minor modifications to the existing RSC model.
Technical Paper

Simulation Results from a Model of a Tractor Trailer Vehicle Equipped with Roll Stability Control

In 2007, a software model of a Roll Stability Control (RSC) system was developed based on test data for a Volvo tractor at NHTSA's Vehicle Research and Test Center (VRTC). This model was designed to simulate the RSC performance of a commercially available Electronic Stability Control (ESC) system. The RSC model was developed in Simulink and integrated with the available braking model (TruckSim) for the truck. The Simulink models were run in parallel with the vehicle dynamics model of a truck in TruckSim. The complete vehicle model including the RSC system model is used to simulate the behavior of the actual truck and determine the capability of the RSC system in preventing rollovers under different conditions. Several simulations were performed to study the behavior of the model developed and to compare its performance with that of an actual test vehicle equipped with RSC.
Technical Paper

Modeling of a 6×4 Tractor and Trailers for Use in Real Time Hardware in the Loop Simulation for ESC Testing

According to NHTSA's 2011 Traffic Safety Facts [1], passenger vehicle occupant fatalities continued the strong decline that has been occurring recently. In 2011, there were 21,253 passenger vehicles fatalities compared to 22,273 in 2010, and that was a 4.6% decrease. However; large-truck occupant fatalities increased from 530 in 2010 to 635 in 2011, which is a 20% increase. This was a second consecutive year in which large truck fatalities have increased (9% increase from 2009 to 2010). There was also a 15% increase in large truck occupant injuries from 2010. Moreover, the fatal crashes involving large trucks increased by 1.9%, in contrast to other-vehicle-occupant fatalities that declined by 3.6% from 2010. The 2010 accident statistics NHTSA's report reveals that large trucks have a fatal accident involvement rate of 1.22 vehicles per 100 million vehicle miles traveled compared to 1.53 for light trucks and 1.18 for passenger cars.
Technical Paper

Simulator Study of Heavy Truck Air Disc Brake Effectiveness During Emergency Braking

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

Scenario Regeneration using a Hardware-in-the-loop Simulation Platform to Study ABS and ESC Performance Benefits

This study was performed to showcase the possible applications of the Hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) simulation environment developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), to test heavy truck crash avoidance safety systems. In this study, the HIL simulation environment was used to recreate a simulation of an actual accident scenario involving a single tractor semi-trailer combination. The scenario was then simulated with and without an antilock brake system (ABS) and electronic stability control (ESC) system to investigate the crash avoidance potential afforded by the tractor equipped with the safety systems. The crash scenario was interpreted as a path-following problem, and three possible driver intended paths were developed from the accident scene data.
Technical Paper

Advancements in Tire Modeling Through Implementation of Load and Speed Dependent Coefficients

An existing tire model was investigated for additional normal load-dependent characteristics to improve the large truck simulations developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for the National Advanced Driving Simulator (NADS). Of the existing tire model coefficients, plysteer, lateral friction decay, aligning torque stiffness and normalized longitudinal stiffness were investigated. The findings of the investigation led to improvements in the tire model. The improved model was then applied to TruckSim to compare with the TruckSim table lookup tire model and test data. Additionally, speed-dependent properties for the NADS tire model were investigated (using data from a light truck tire).
Journal Article

Validation of Real Time Hardware in the Loop Simulation for ESC Testing with a 6×4 Tractor and Trailer Models

The tractor trailer models discussed in this paper were for a real-time hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) simulation to test heavy truck electronic stability control (ESC) systems [1]. The accuracy of the simulation results relies on the fidelity and accuracy of the vehicle parameters used. However in this case where hardware components are part of the simulation, their accuracy also affects the proper working of the simulation and ESC unit. Hence both the software and hardware components have to be validated. The validation process discussed in this paper is divided into two sections. The first section deals with the validation of the TruckSim vehicle model, where experimental data is compared with simulation results from TruckSim. Once the vehicle models are validated, they are incorporated in the HIL simulation and the second section discusses the validation of the whole HIL system with ESC.
Journal Article

Development of a Roll Stability Control Model for a Tractor Trailer Vehicle

Heavy trucks are involved in many accidents every year and Electronic Stability Control (ESC) is viewed as a means to help mitigate this problem. ESC systems are designed to reduce the incidence of single vehicle loss of control, which might lead to rollover or jackknife. As the working details and control strategies of commercially available ESC systems are proprietary, a generic model of an ESC system that mimics the basic logical functionality of commercial systems was developed. This paper deals with the study of the working of a commercial ESC system equipped on an actual tractor trailer vehicle. The particular ESC system found on the test vehicle contained both roll stability control (RSC) and yaw stability control (YSC) features. This work focused on the development of a reliable RSC software model, and the integration of it into a full vehicle simulation (TruckSim) of a heavy truck.
Journal Article

Integration of a Torsional Stiffness Model into an Existing Heavy Truck Vehicle Dynamics Model

Torsional stiffness properties were developed for both a 53-foot box trailer and a 28-foot flatbed control trailer based on experimental measurements. In order to study the effect of torsional stiffness on the dynamics of a heavy truck vehicle dynamics computer model, static maneuvers were conducted comparing different torsional stiffness values to the original rigid vehicle model. Stiffness properties were first developed for a truck tractor model. It was found that the incorporation of a torsional stiffness model had only a minor effect on the overall tractor response for steady-state maneuvers up to 0.4 g lateral acceleration. The effect of torsional stiffness was also studied for the trailer portion of the existing model.