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Technical Paper

Expanding the Application of Magnesium Components in the Automotive Industry: A Strategic Vision

There is an increasing global realization about the need for fuel efficient vehicles. An inexpensive way to accomplish this is through mass reduction, and one of the most effective ways that this can occur is through substituting current materials with magnesium, the lightest structural metal. This document describes the results of a U.S. Automotive Materials Partnership (USAMP) sponsored study [1] that examines why magnesium use has only grown 10% per year and identifies how to promote more widespread commercial applications beyond the 5-6 kg of component currently in vehicles. The issues and concerns which have limited magnesium use are discussed via a series of research and development themes. These address concerns associated with corrosion, fastening, and minimal metalworking/non-traditional casting processing. The automotive and magnesium supplier industries have only a limited ability to develop implementation-ready magnesium components.
Journal Article

Exhaust Valve & Valve Seat Insert – Development for an Industrial LPG Application

Automotive engines are regularly utilized in the material handling market where LPG is often the primary fuel used. When compared to gasoline, the use of gaseous fuels (LPG and CNG) as well as alcohol based fuels, often result in significant increases in valve seat insert (VSI) and valve face wear. This phenomenon is widely recognized and the engine manufacturer is tasked to identify and incorporate appropriate valvetrain material and design features that can meet the ever increasing life expectations of the end-user. Alternate materials are often developed based on laboratory testing – testing that may not represent real world usage. The ultimate goal of the product engineer is to utilize accelerated lab test procedures that can be correlated to field life and field failure mechanisms, and then select appropriate materials/design features that meet the targeted life requirements.
Technical Paper


The Experimental Safety Vehicle powertrain and fuel system developed by General Motors in compliance with Contract DOT-OS-00095 with the U.S. Department of Transportation include several special features: a low engine accessory package to meet the front visibility down angle of 8 degrees, engine and transmission mounting for retention at high decelerations, a light aluminum engine, an over-the-rear-axle fuel tank, and a unique evaporative emission fuel pipe routing. A comprehensive test program was planned and final testing to validate contract specifications was conducted.
Technical Paper

Power-Based Noise Reduction Concept and Measurement Techniques

This paper presents a Power-Based Noise Reduction (PBNR) concept and uses PBNR to set vehicle acoustic specifications for sound package design. This paper starts with the PBNR definition and describes the correct measurement techniques. This paper also derives the asymptotic relationships among PBNR, conventional noise reduction (NR), and sound transmission loss, for a simple case consisting of the source, path, and receiver subsystems. The advantages of using PBNR over conventional Noise Reduction (NR) are finally demonstrated in vehicle measurement examples.
Technical Paper

Development of an Improved Cosmetic Corrosion Test for Finished Aluminum Autobody Panels

Since 2000, an Aluminum Cosmetic Corrosion task group within the SAE Automotive Corrosion and Protection (ACAP) Committee has existed. The task group has pursued the goal of establishing a standard test method for in-laboratory cosmetic corrosion evaluations of finished aluminum auto body panels. A cooperative program uniting OEM, supplier, and consultants has been created and has been supported in part by USAMP (AMD 309) and the U.S. Department of Energy. Prior to this committee's formation, numerous laboratory corrosion test environments have been used to evaluate the performance of painted aluminum closure panels. However, correlations between these laboratory test results and in-service performance have not been established. Thus, the primary objective of this task group's project was to identify an accelerated laboratory test method that correlates well with in-service performance.
Technical Paper

Simulation of Vehicle Exterior Sound Fields by High Frequency Boundary Element Method

With Statistical Energy Analysis (SEA) proven to be a powerful tool for airborne noise analysis, the capability of predicting the exterior sound field around a vehicle at high frequencies (the load case in the SEA analysis) is of particular interest to OEMs and suppliers. This paper employs the High Frequency Boundary Element Method (HFBEM) to simulate the scattered exterior sound field distribution due to a monopole source. It is shown that the proposed method is able to efficiently predict the spatial and frequency averaged sound pressure levels reasonably well up to 10 kHz, even at points in the near field of the vehicle body.
Technical Paper

A Dynamic Durability Analysis Method and Application to a Battery Support Subsystem

The battery support in a small car is an example of a subsystem that lends itself to mounted component dynamic fatigue analysis, due to its weight and localized attachments. This paper describes a durability analysis method that was developed to define the required enforced motion, stress response, and fatigue life for such subsystems. The method combines the large mass method with the modal transient formulation to determine the dynamic stress responses. The large mass method was selected over others for its ease of use and efficiency when working with the modal formulation and known accelerations from a single driving point. In this example, these known accelerations were obtained from the drive files of a 4-DOF shake table that was used for corresponding lab tests of a rear compartment body structure. These drive files, originally displacements, were differentiated twice and filtered to produce prescribed accelerations to the finite element model.
Technical Paper

The Importance of Sealing Pass-Through Locations Via the Front of Dash Barrier Assembly

An improvement in a vehicle's front of dash barrier assembly's acoustical performance has in the past been addressed by both adding individual absorbers and increasing the overall weight of the dash sound barrier assembly. Depending upon the target market of the vehicle, adding mass may not be an option for improved acoustical performance. Understanding the value of an increase in vehicle mass and / or cost for a specific level of improved acoustical performance continues to plague both Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) Engineers and Purchasing representatives. This paper examines the importance of properly sealing the front of dash pass-through areas and offers recommendations which can improve the overall vehicle acoustical performance without the addition of cost and mass to the vehicle.
Technical Paper

Brake Squeal Noise Testing and Analysis Correlation

Brake squeal has been a persistent quality issue for automobile OEMs and brake system suppliers. The ability to model and measure brake squeal dynamics is of utmost importance in brake squeal reduction efforts. However, due to the complex nature of brake squeal and the wide frequency range in which it occurs, it is difficult to accurately correlate and update analytical models to experimental results. This paper introduces a systematic and rigorous correlation and updating process that yields FE models, which can accurately reproduce high-frequency brake squeal dynamics.
Technical Paper

Accuracy of Total Hydrocarbon Analyzer Measurements Measurements in the SULEV Region

The super-ultra-low-emission-vehicle (SULEV) non-methane organic gas (NMOG) hydrocarbon exhaust standard as legislated by the state of California LEV II regulations is 10 milligrams per mile. This requires that the associative instrumentation must be capable of accurately and precisely determining total hydrocarbons (THC) concentrations on the order of 10 parts per billion-carbon (ppbC) for vehicle tests run under optimum conditions on a bag mini-diluter (BMD) test site. The flame ionization detector (FID) is the standard instrument used in the measurement of THC. Currently, there are many instrument manufacturers that produce these types of analyzers. This paper studies the limit of detection and accuracy capabilities of one of these instruments, the Beckman 400A FID. In addition, the paper shows evidence that supports that this “state of technology” as described by this instrument, is sufficient to meet the demands of the today's most stringent, vehicle emission standards.
Technical Paper

Sensitivity Study of Staircase Fatigue Tests Using Monte Carlo Simulation

The staircase fatigue test method is a well-established, but poorly understood probe for determining fatigue strength mean and standard deviation. The sensitivity of results to underlying distributions was studied using Monte Carlo simulation by repeatedly sampling known distributions of hypothetical fatigue strength data with the staircase test method. In this paper, the effects of the underlying distribution on staircase test results are presented with emphasis on original normal, lognormal, Weibull and bimodal data. The results indicate that the mean fatigue strength determined by the staircase testing protocol is largely unaffected by the underlying distribution, but the standard deviation is not. Suggestions for conducting staircase tests are provided.
Technical Paper

Life-cycle Management in the Automotive Supply Chain: Results of a Survey of Saturn Tier I Suppliers

Saturn Corporation and its suppliers are partnering with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Design for the Environment (DfE) Program and the University of Tennessee (UT) Center for Clean Products and Clean Technologies (CCPCT) in a project to develop a model for life-cycle management (LCM). This paper presents key findings from the first phase of the project, a survey by Saturn of its suppliers to determine their interests and needs for a supply chain LCM project, and identifies framework strategies for successful LCM.
Technical Paper

Standard Interfaces and Standard Software Architecture as a Means For “Go Fast” Engineering

The global market pressure of requiring high quality vehicles at lower prices has forced automotive manufacturers to change the way they engineer their products. In the electrical/electronic part of the automobile business, a strategy of reusing common hardware and software components was needed to support these market pressures. The General Motors strategy was to develop a standard electrical architecture. This paper will identify what a standard electrical architecture is, how a standard electrical architecture helps General Motors meet market demands, and issues that General Motors encountered in trying to implement this standard electrical architecture.
Technical Paper

Robust Assessment of USCAR Electrical Connectors Using Standardized Signal-To-Noise

Robust assessment using standardized signal-to-noise (SS/N) is a Design For Six Sigma (DFSS) methodology used to assess the mating quality of USCAR electrical connectors. When the insertion force vs. distance relationship is compared to a standard under varying environmental and system-related noise conditions, the ideal function is transformed into a linear relationship between actual and ideal force at the sample points acquired during the mating displacement. Since the ideal function used in the robust assessment of competing designs has a linear slope of 1 through the origin, the SS/N function used is of the form 10 log (1/σ2), also known as nominal-the-best type 2. Using this assessment methodology, designs are compared, with a higher SS/N indicating lower variation from the standard.
Technical Paper

From Algorithms to Software - A Practical Approach to Model-Driven Design

The value of model-based design has been attempted to be communicated for more than a decade. As methods and tools have appeared and disappeared from a series of different vendors it has become apparent that no single vendor has a solution that meets all users’ needs. Recently standards (UML, MDA, MOF, EMF, etc.) have become a dominant force and an alternative to vendor-specific languages and processes. Where these standards have succeeded and vendors have failed is in the realization that they do not provide the answer, but instead provide the foundation to develop the answer. It is in the utilization of these standards and their capability to be customized that companies have achieved success. Customization has occurred to fit organizations, processes, and architectures that leverage the value of model-driven design.
Technical Paper

SAE Standard Procedure J2747 for Measuring Hydraulic Pump Airborne Noise

This work discusses the development of SAE procedure J2747, “Hydraulic Pump Airborne Noise Bench Test”. This is a test procedure describing a standard method for measuring radiated sound power levels from hydraulic pumps of the type typically used in automotive power steering systems, though it can be extended for use with other types of pumps. This standard was developed by a committee of industry representatives from OEM's, suppliers and NVH testing firms familiar with NVH measurement requirements for automotive hydraulic pumps. Details of the test standard are discussed. The hardware configuration of the test bench and the configuration of the test article are described. Test conditions, data acquisition and post-processing specifics are also included. Contextual information regarding the reasoning and priorities applied by the development committee is provided to further explain the strengths, limitations and intended usage of the test procedure.
Journal Article

Pneumatic Brake Apply System Response and Aero-Acoustic Performance Considerations

Over the past decade, the automotive industry has seen a rapid decrease in product development cycle time and an ever increasing need by original equipment manufacturers and their suppliers to differentiate themselves in the marketplace. This differentiation is increasingly accomplished by introducing new technology while continually improving the performance of existing automotive systems. In the area of automotive brake system design, and, in particular, the brake apply subsystem, an increased focus has been placed on the development of electrohydraulic apply systems and brake-by-wire systems to replace traditional pneumatic and hydraulic systems. Nevertheless, the traditional brake apply systems, especially vacuum-based or pneumatic systems, will continue to represent the majority of brake apply system production volume into the foreseeable future, which underscores the need to improve the performance and application of these traditional systems in passenger cars and light-trucks.
Journal Article

The Electrification of the Automobile: From Conventional Hybrid, to Plug-in Hybrids, to Extended-Range Electric Vehicles

A key element of General Motors' Advanced Propulsion Technology Strategy is the electrification of the automobile. The objectives of this strategy are reduced fuel consumption, reduced emissions and increased energy security/diversification. The introduction of hybrid vehicles was one of the first steps as a result of this strategy. To determine future opportunities and direction, an extensive study was completed to better understand the ability of Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV) and Extended-Range Electric Vehicles (E-REV) to address societal challenges. The study evaluated real world representative driving datasets to understand actual vehicle usage. Vehicle simulations were conducted to evaluate the merits of PHEV and E-REV configurations. As derivatives of conventional full hybrids, PHEVs have the potential to deliver a significant reduction in petroleum usage.
Technical Paper

Optimum Design of Hood Ajar Switch For Quality

The Hood ajar sensing system provides customer feedback regarding the latch positional state of hood. If the sensing system is not robust to variation due to manufacturing, thermal conditions, and assembly, diagnostic failures can result. Executing various elements of the design for six sigma process can reduce the potential for diagnostic failures. This paper presents a method for achieving quality improvements by developing transfer functions, and using them for sensitivity and variance analysis. Control parameters were optimized to minimize non-conformal situations in the presence of various noise conditions.
Technical Paper

Development of the Hybrid System for the Saturn VUE Hybrid

The hybrid system for the 2007 Model Year Saturn VUE Green Line Hybrid SUV was designed to provide the fuel economy of a compact sedan, while delivering improved acceleration performance over the base vehicle, and maintaining full vehicle utility. Key elements of the hybrid powertrain are a 2.4L DOHC engine with dual cam-phasers, a modified 4-speed automatic transmission, an electric motor-generator connected to the crankshaft through a bi-directional belt-drive system, power electronics to control the motor-generator, and a NiMH battery pack. The VUE's hybrid functionality includes: engine stop-start, regenerative braking, intelligent charge control of the hybrid battery, electric power assist, and electrically motored creep. Methods of improving urban and highway fuel economy via optimal use of the hybrid motor and battery, engine and transmission hardware and controls modifications, and vehicle enhancements, are discussed.