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Technical Paper

Results of the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association Component and Full-Vehicle Side Impact Test Procedure Evaluation Program

This paper presents an extensive research program undertaken to develop improved side impact test methods. The development of a component side impact test device along with an associated test procedure are reviewed. The results of accident data analysis techniques to define anatomical areas most likely to be injured during side impact and definition of test device response corridors based on human surrogate testing conducted by the Association Peugeot/Renault and the University of Heidelberg are discussed. The relationship of response corridors and accident data analysis in earlier phases of the project resulted in definition and development of a component side impact test device to represent the human thorax. A test program to evaluate and compare component and full-vehicle test results is presented.
Technical Paper

Simulation of the Hybrid III Dummy Response to Impact by Nonlinear Finite Element Analysis

The Hybrid III dummy is an anthropomorphic (humanlike) test device, generally used in crashworthiness testing to assess the extent of occupant protection provided by the vehicle structure and its restraint systems in the event of vehicle crash. Lumped-parameter analytical models are commonly used to simulate the dummy response. These models, by virtue of their limited number of degrees of freedom, can neither represent accurate three-dimensional dummy geometry nor detailed structural deformations. In an effort to improve the state-of-the-art in analytical dummy simulations, a set of finite element models of the Hybrid III dummy segments - head, neck, thorax, spine, pelvis, knee, upper extremities and lower extremities - were developed. The component models replicated the hardware geometry as closely as possible. Appropriate elastic material models were selected for the dummy “skeleton”, with the exterior “soft tissues” represented by viscoelastic materials.
Technical Paper

Racing Car Restraint System Frontal Crash Performance Testing

This paper presents the results of a series of over 30 impact sled simulations of racing car frontal crashes conducted as part of the GM Motorsports Safety Technology Research Program. A Hyge™ impact sled fitted with a simulated racing car seat and restraint system was used to simulate realistic crash loading with a mid-size male Hybrid III dummy. The results of tests, in the form of measured loads, displacements, and accelerations, are presented and comparisons made with respect to the levels of these parameters seen in typical passenger car crash testing and to current injury threshold values.
Technical Paper

Anthropometry of Indy Car Drivers

This study assembled a database of anatomic dimensions of Indy Car drivers and developed procedures that can be used as models for future compilations of anatomic data from specialized populations. The database defines the body configuration for the Indy Car driver population and indicates that the current HYBRID III, midsize male crash dummy will provide a reasonable approximation of that population if used in investigations involving issues of crash protection. This study took advantage of a unique opportunity to assemble an anthropometric database from a specialized population which was compared to an existing database collected from a comparable sub-set of the United States population.
Technical Paper

Assessment of Air Bag Deployment Loads with the Small Female Hybrid III Dummy

This study is an extension of previous work on driver air bag deployment loads which used the mid-size male Hybrid Ill dummy. Both small female and mid-size male Hybrid Ill dummies were tested with a range of near-positions relative to the air bag module. These alignments ranged from the head centered on the module to the chest centered on the module and with various separations and lateral shifts from the module. For both sized dummies the severity of the loading from the air bag depended on alignment and separation of the dummy with respect to the air bag module. No single alignment provided high responses for all body regions, indicating that one test at a typical alignment cannot simultaneously determine the potential for injury risk for the head, neck, and torso. Based on comparisons with their respective injury assessment reference values, the risk of chest injury appeared similar for both sized dummies.
Technical Paper

A Predictive Design Methodology for Active Top Pads During Airbag Deployment

Using a combination of engineering test experience, explicit finite-element analysis, and advanced materials characterization, a predictive engineering method has been developed that can assist in the development of active top pads. An active top pad is the component of the instrument panel that covers the passenger airbag module and articulates during a crash event, allowing the airbag to deploy. This paper highlights the predictive analysis method, analytical results interpretation, and suggestions for future development.
Technical Paper

Human Volunteer Testing of GM Air Cushions

From November 1970 through August 1971 an extensive program of static and dynamic air cushion inflation tests utilizing human volunteers was conducted at Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico, sponsored by the Department of Transportation. Forty-one full cushion deployment static firings were made, with air cushion hardware and seating buck environment designed by General Motors. The static series was followed by 35 dynamic sled firings of human volunteers, beginning at 8.6 g (15.1 mph) and culminating at 21.7 g (31.5 mph). A major objective of both the static and dynamic test series was to identify changes in air-cushion design found necessary to improve its protective capability for human beings. Because of the severity of cushion deployment, one modification was made following the initial static tests: The orifice diameter size of the bag inlet was reduced from 1.0 to 0.6 in to diminish the rapidity of bag inflation. This modification proved effective in the dynamic series.
Technical Paper

Plasma Jet Ignition of Lean Mixtures

The development of a plasma jet ignition system is described on a 4-cyl, 140 in3 engine. Performance was evaluated on the basis of combustion flame photographs in a single-cylinder engine at 20/1 A/F dynamometer tests on a modified 4-cyl engine, and cold start emissions, fuel economy, and drivability in a vehicle at 19/1 air fuel ratio. In addition to adjustable engine variables such as air-fuel ratio and spark advance, system electrical and mechanical parameters were varied to improve combustion of lean mixtures. As examples, the air-fuel ratio range was 16-22/1, secondary ignition current was varied from 40 to 6000 mA, and plasma jet cavity and electrode geometry were optimized. It is shown that the plasma jet produces on ignition source which penetrates the mixture ahead of the initial flame front and reduces oxides of nitrogen emission, in comparison to a conventional production combustion chamber.
Technical Paper

Multiple Solutions by Performance Band: An Effective Way to Deal with Modeling Error

Robust optimization usually requires numerous functional evaluations, which is not feasible when the functional evaluation is time-consuming. Examples in automobile industry include crash worthiness/safety and fatigue life simulations. In practice, a response surface model (RSM) is often used as a surrogate to the CAE model, so that robust optimization can be carried out. However, if the error in the RSM is significant, the solution based on the RSM can be invalid. This paper proposes a method of finding multiple candidate solutions, all of which have similar predicted performances. This approach is effective in finding the close-to-optimum solutions when the model has error, and providing design alternatives. Examples are provided to illustrate the method.
Technical Paper

Rollover Sensor Signature Test Development

Although rollover crashes represent a small fraction (approximately 3%) of all motor vehicle crashes, they account for roughly one quarter of crash fatalities to occupants of cars, light trucks, and vans (NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts, 2004). Therefore, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has identified rollover injuries as one of its safety priorities. Motor vehicle manufacturers are developing technologies to reduce the risk of injury associated with rollover collisions. This paper describes the development by General Motors Corporation (GM) of a suite of laboratory tests that can be used to develop sensors that can deploy occupant protection devices like roof rail side air bags and pretensioners in a rollover as well as a discussion of the challenges of conducting this suite of tests.
Technical Paper

General Motors High Performance 4.3L V6 Engine

FIGURE 1 The 200 HP high performance 4.3L Vortec V6 engine has been developed to satisfy the need for a fuel efficient performance powerplant in the General Motors small truck platforms. Marketing requirements included strong low and mid range torque, relatively high specific power, smoothness and noise comparable to the best competitive six cylinder engines, excellent driveability, and a new technology image. Maintaining the 4.3L engine record of high reliability and customer satisfaction was an absolute requirement. Fuel economy and exhaust emission performance had to meet expected customer and legislated requirements in the mid 1990's.
Technical Paper

Running Loss Test Procedure Development

A running loss test procedure has been developed which integrates a point-source collection method to measure fuel evaporative running loss from vehicles during their operation on the chassis dynamometer. The point-source method is part of a complete running loss test procedure which employs the combination of site-specific collection devices on the vehicle, and a sampling pump with sampling lines. Fugitive fuel vapor is drawn into these collectors which have been matched to characteristics of the vehicle and the test cell. The composite vapor sample is routed to a collection bag through an adaptation of the ordinary constant volume dilution system typically used for vehicle exhaust gas sampling. Analysis of the contents of such bags provides an accurate measure of the mass and species of running loss collected during each of three LA-4* driving cycles. Other running loss sampling methods were considered by the Auto-Oil Air Quality Improvement Research Program (AQIRP or Program).
Technical Paper

Selection and Development of a Particulate Trap System for a Light Duty Diesel Engine

In order to meet progressively stringent regulations on particulate emission from diesel engines, GM has developed and tested a variety of trap oxidizer systems over the years. A particulate trap system for a light duty diesel engine has been selected and developed based on this experience, with particular emphasis on production feasibility. The system components have been designed and developed in collaboration with potential suppliers, to the extent possible. The technical performance of this system has been demonstrated by successful system durability testing in the test cell and vehicle experience in computer controlled automatic operation mode. Although the system shows promise, its production readiness will require more development and extensive vehicle validation under all operating conditions.
Technical Paper

Vehicle Crashworthiness Analysis Using Numerical Methods and Experiments

Past studies have shown the applicability of advanced numerical methods for crashworthiness simulation. Lumped parameter (LP) modeling and finite element (FE) modeling have been demonstrated as two useful methodologies for achieving this endeavor. Experimental tests and analytical modeling using LP and FE techniques were performed on an experimental vehicle in order to evaluate the compatibility and interrelationship of the two numerical methods for crashworthiness simulation. The objective of the numerical analysis was to simulate the vehicle crashworthiness in a 0 degree, 48.6 KPH frontal impact. Additionally, a single commercial software, LS-DYNA3D, was used for both the LP and FE analysis.
Technical Paper

Hybrid III Sternal Deflection Associated with Thoracic Injury Severities of Occupants Restrained with Force-Limiting Shoulder Belts

A relationship between the risk of significant thoracic injury (AIS ≥ 3) and Hybrid III dummy sternal deflection for shoulder belt loading is developed. This relationship is based on an analysis of the Association Peugeot-Renault accident data of 386 occupants who were restrained by three-point belt systems that used a shoulder belt with a force-limiting element. For 342 of these occupants, the magnitude of the shoulder belt force could be estimated with various degrees of certainty from the amount of force-limiting band ripping. Hyge sled tests were conducted with a Hybrid III dummy to reproduce the various degrees of band tearing. The resulting Hybrid III sternal deflections were correlated to the frequencies of AIS ≥ 3 thoracic injury observed for similar band tearing in the field accident data. This analysis indicates that for shoulder belt loading a Hybrid III sternal deflection of 50 mm corresponds to a 40 to 50% risk of an AIS ≥ 3 thoracic injury.
Technical Paper

Safety Belt Buckle Environment in Vehicle Planar Crash Tests

A study was conducted by General Motors at its crash test facility located at the Milford Proving Ground. The intent of this study was to expand upon the currently available research regarding the safety belt buckle environment during full scale planar crash tests. Buckle accelerations and webbing tensions were measured and recorded to characterize, in part, buckle responses in a crash environment. Previous studies have focused primarily on the component level testing of safety belt buckles. The crash tests included a variety of vehicles, impact types, seating positions, Anthropomorphic Test Devices (ATDs), impact speeds, and impact angles. Also included were various safety belt restraint systems and pretensioner designs. This study reports on data recorded from 100 full scale crash tests with 180 instrumented end release safety belt buckles. Acceleration measurements were obtained with tri-axial accelerometers mounted onto the buckles.
Technical Paper

Diesel Exhaust Odor Its Evaluation and Relation to Exhaust Gas Composition

TECHNIQUES, based on panel estimates, were developed for evaluating the odor and irritation intensities of undiluted diesel-engine exhaust gases or of various dilutions of these gases in air. Along with the estimates, chemical analyses were made to determine the concentrations of total aldehydes, formaldehyde, and oxides of nitrogen. Statistically significant correlations were found between odor or irritation intensity estimates and the analytical data, but these correlations were too weak to permit accurate prediction of odor or irritation from chemical analyses. Effects of some engine variables on diesel odor were studied. Possible means of reducing diesel odor are discussed.
Technical Paper

A Sampling System for the Measurement of PreCatalyst Emissions from Vehicles Operating Under Transient Conditions

A proportional sampler for vehicle feedgas and tailpipe emissions has been developed that extracts a small, constant fraction of the total exhaust flow during rapid transient changes in engine speed. Heated sampling lines are used to extract samples either before or after the catalytic converter. Instantaneous exhaust mass flow is measured by subtracting the CVS dilution air volume from the total CVS volume. This parameter is used to maintain a constant dilution ratio and proportional sample. The exhaust sample is diluted with high-purity air or nitrogen and is delivered into Tedlar sample bags. These transient test cycle weighted feedgas samples can be collected for subsequent analysis of hydrocarbons and oxygenated hydrocarbon species. This “mini-diluter” offers significant advantages over the conventional CVS system. The concentration of the samples are higher than those collected from the current CVS system because the dilution ratio can be optimized depending on the fuel.
Technical Paper

SIR Sensor Closure Time Prediction for Frontal Impact Using Full Vehicle Finite Element Analysis

This paper describes an analytical method to predict the sensor closure time for an airbag (Supplemental Inflatable Restraint - SIR) system in frontal impacts. The analytical tools used are the explicit finite element code, an in-house sensor closure time prediction program, and a full vehicle finite element model. Nodal point information obtained from the full vehicle finite element simulation is used to predict the sensor closure time of the airbag system. This analytical method can provide the important crash signature information for a SIR system development of a new vehicle program. In this paper, 0-degree frontal impacts at four different impact speeds with two different bumper energy absorption systems are studied using the non-linear finite element computer program DYNA3D. It is concluded that this analytical method is very useful to predict the SIR sensor closure time.
Technical Paper

Improved Emissions Speciation Methodology for Phase II of the Auto/Oil Air Quality Improvement Research Program - Hydrocarbons and Oxygenates

Analytical procedures for the speciation of hydrocarbons and oxygenates (ethers, aldehydes, ketones and alcohols) in vehicle evaporative and tailpipe exhaust emissions have been improved for Phase II studies of the Auto/Oil Air Quality Improvement Research Program (AQIRP). One gas chromatograph (GC) was used for measurement of C1-C4 species and a second GC for C4-C12 species. Detection limits for this technique are 0.005 ppm C or 0.1 mg/mile exhaust emission level at a chromatographic signal-to-noise ratio of 3/1, a ten-fold improvement over the Phase I technique. The Phase I library was modified to include additional species for a total of 154 species. A 23-component gas standard was used to establish a calibration scale for automated computer identification of species. This method identifies 95±3% of the total hydrocarbon mass measured by GC for a typical exhaust sample. Solid adsorbent cartridges or impingers were used to collect aldehydes and ketones.