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Technical Paper

Comparative Performance Testing of Passenger Cars Relative to Fmvss 214 and the Ue 96/Ec/27 Side Impact Regulations: Phase I

1998-05-31
986168
Based on a long recognized need, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has begun to reexamine the potential for international harmonization of side impact requirements. To this end, NHTSA, as directed by the U.S. Congress, has recently submitted a report to the Congress on the agency plans for achieving harmonization of the U.S. and European side impact regulations. The first phase of this plan involves crash testing vehicles compliant to FMVSS 214 to the European Union side impact directive 96/27/EC. This paper presents the results to date of this research. The level of safety performance of the vehicles based on the injury measures of the European and U.S. side impact regulations is assessed.
Technical Paper

Restraint Robustness in Frontal Crashes

2007-04-16
2007-01-1181
The protection of a vehicle occupant in a frontal crash is a combination of vehicle front structural design and occupant restraint design. Once chosen and manufactured, these design features must interact with a wide variety of structural characteristics in potential crash partners. If robust, the restraint design will provide a high level of protection for a wide variety of crash conditions. This paper examines how robust a given restraint system is for occupant self-protection and how frontal design can improve the restraint performance of potential crash partners, thus improving their restraint robustness as well. To examine restraint robustness in self protection, the effect of various vehicle deceleration characteristics on occupant injury potential is investigated for a given restraint design. A MADYMO model of a 1996 Taurus interior and its restraint system with a Hybrid III 50th percentile male dummy are simulated and subjected to 650 crash pulses taken during 25 years of U.S.
Technical Paper

Closed Loop Steering System Model for the National Advanced Driving Simulator

2004-03-08
2004-01-1072
This paper presents the details of the model for the physical steering system used on the National Advanced Driving Simulator. The system is basically a hardware-in-the-loop (steering feedback motor and controls) steering system coupled with the core vehicle dynamics of the simulator. The system's torque control uses cascaded position and velocity feedback and is controlled to provide steering feedback with variable stiffness and dynamic properties. The reference model, which calculates the desired value of the torque, is made of power steering torque, damping function torque, torque from tires, locking limit torque, and driver input torque. The model also provides a unique steering dead-band function that is important for on-center feel. A Simulink model of the hardware/software is presented and analysis of the simulator steering system is provided.
Technical Paper

Thoracic Trauma Assessment Formulations for Restrained Drivers in Simulated Frontal Impacts

1994-11-01
942206
Sixty-three simulated frontal impacts using cadaveric specimens were performed to examine and quantify the performance of various contemporary automotive restraint systems. Test specimens were instrumented with accelerometers and chest bands to characterize their mechanical responses during the impact. The resulting thoracic injury severity was determined using detailed autopsy and was classified using the Abbreviated Injury Scale. The ability of various mechanical parameters and combinations of parameters to assess the observed injury severities was examined and resulted in the observation that belt restraint systems generally had higher injury rates than air bag restraint systems for the same level of mechanical responses. To provide better injury evaluations from observed mechanical parameters without prior knowledge of what restraint system was being used, a dichotomous process was developed.
Technical Paper

The New Car Assessment Program:Five Star Rating System and Vehicle Safety Performance Characteristics

1995-02-01
950888
In the New Car Assessment Program (NCAP), beginning with the model year 1994 vehicles, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) developed and adopted a simplified nonnumeric format for presenting the comparative frontal crashworthiness safety information to consumers. This paper presents the basis for the development of this “star rating” system. The injury probability functions which are used for the star rating system are also applied to the results of the recent NCAP real-world correlation studies and a review of these studies is given. The safety performance for restrained occupants as measured in NCAP is dependent on several parameters which include: the design of the restraint system, the maintenance of the integrity of the occupant space, and the energy management performance of the front structure.
Technical Paper

Deployment of Air Bags into the Thorax of an Out-of-Position Dummy

1999-03-01
1999-01-0764
The air bag has proven effective in reducing fatalities in frontal crashes with estimated decreases ranging from 11% to 30% depending on the size of the vehicle [IIHS-1995, Kahane-1996]. At the same time, some air bag designs have caused fatalities when front-seat passengers have been in close proximity to the deploying air bag [Kleinberger-1997]. The objective of this study was to develop an accurate and repeatable out-of-position test fixture to study the deployment of air bags into out-of-position occupants. Tests were performed with a 5th percentile female Hybrid III dummy and studied air bag loading on the thorax using draft ISO-2 out-of-position (OOP) occupant positioning. Two different interpretations of the ISO-2 positioning were used in this study. The first, termed Nominal ISO-2, placed the chin on the steering wheel with the spine parallel to the steering wheel.
Technical Paper

Determining the Effects of Brake Degradation

1973-02-01
730190
This paper presents an approach for evaluating the effects of brake system component degradation on vehicle braking performance. The approach involves the use of an inertial brake dynamometer, vehicle computer simulation, and vehicle test. The approach, procedures, and results of the study of the effects of worn friction materials, worn discs and drums, and contaminated brakes are presented.
Technical Paper

Automotive Recorder Research - A Summary of Accident Data and Test Results

1974-02-01
740566
The NHTSA has developed automotive recorders which can measure crash triaxial acceleration/time histories during vehicle collisions. From these acceleration histories (recorded on a magnetic disc), velocity/time histories and velocity change during impact are derived to provide measures of vehicle crash severity. The purpose of developing these recorders is to provide accurate and quantitative relationships of vehicle crash severity with occupant fatalities and serious injuries from real-world accidents. To date, a total of 1200 disc recorders has been produced, approximately 1050 recorders have been installed in fleet vehicles, and 23 accident records have been analyzed. This paper has been prepared to present the progress made in the Disc Recorder Pilot Project as of March 31, 1974. Recorder data from accidents involving vehicles equipped with disc recorders will be discussed and compared with associated reports by accident investigators.
Technical Paper

Pedestrian Injuries and the Downsizing of Cars

1983-02-01
830050
The Pedestrian Injury Causation Study (PICS) is used to investigate the relations between car weight and pedestrian injuries in frontal accidents. As car curb weight decreased, large changes in overall severity are not observed, although the proportion of head injuries increases. Since contacts of the windshield area are more common in smaller cars, they are studied in detail.
Technical Paper

Comparison of Pedestrian Kinematics and Injuries in Staged Impact Tests with Cadavers and Mathematical 2D Simulations

1983-02-01
830186
The paper presents a comparison of kinematic responses between the MVMA-2D and the MAC-DAN pedestrian models and pedestrian cadaver kinematics observed in staged car/pedestrian impact tests. The paper also discusses the injuries experienced in the cadaver tests. Seven cadaver specimens in the standing posture were impacted at 25 mph by two different cars: one having a steel bumper and the other having a plastic bumper. The MVMA-2D and MAC-DAN mathematical pedestrian models were employed to simulate pedestrian impacts at 25 mph by a vehicle with a stylized geometry that is similar to the vehicles used in cadaver tests. Comparison of the simulations and the cadaver tests show that both models require further refinement to be able to more accurately simulate the kinematics of the lower legs during impacts with the vehicle bumper.
Technical Paper

Traffic Safety Trends and Forecasts

1984-04-01
840880
Motor vehicle fatalities are expected to continue their long term upward trend for the remainder of the 1980 decade to an annual rate of approximately 50,000 by 1990. The assumptions upon which this projection is based include a greater number of vehicles and drivers, increased travel and a higher rate of economic growth. Although the absolute number of fatalities is expected to increase, private and public safety efforts will result in a continuing decline in fatality risks per unit of travel.
Technical Paper

Traffic Related Disabilities and Impairments and Their Economic Consequences

1986-02-24
860505
A study was made of the incidence of traffic related injuries, the related disability and impairment, and the resulting economic consequences. Crash data covering the incidence of injuries and their distribution by injury type and severity show that nearly three and a half million persons per year are injured in traffic crashes, with roughly half of them experiencing at least one day of disability. Brain and spinal cord injuries, both believed to have long term consequences, were examined in greater detail. Epidemiological data covering these injuries indicate about 60,000 persons suffer disabling brain injuries and about 4,000 persons suffer disabling spinal cord injuries each year. These are significantly larger incidence values for these two injury types than shown by the crash data. There is little quantatative data on the disability and impairment resulting from traffic crashes, nor is there agreement on how to report such data.
Technical Paper

Improvements in the Simulation of Unrestrained Passengers in Frontal Crashes Using Vehicle Test Data

1986-02-24
860654
The absence of data on the load deflection and energy absorption characteristics of vehicle interiors has been a factor which limits the accuracy of crash victim simulations. A recent test program conducted for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has developed data on the interactions of dashboards and knee panels with chests and knees. This paper summarizes the test results for several vehicles and shows how these results are used in simulating vehicle crash tests. Comparisons between crash tests and computer reconstruction using the 3-Dimensional Crash Victim Simulator (CVS-3D) for a late model car are included. The simulation shows good agreement with test and illustrates the application of available static and dynamic test data to improve occupant simulations.
Technical Paper

A Simple, Practical Method of Assessing Foam Padding Materials for Head Impact Protection

1986-02-24
860199
Since 1960 head impact responses under the action of various forces have been studied analytically. However, the effects of force distribution upon head injury mechanisms have not been studied because measurements of force distribution during head impacts have not been experimentally available. In the past, several methods were tested in order to measure head contact pressure, but the results were not very useful. Since the skull is a composite shell structure, the thin shell theory may be valid for stress analysis. According to the theory, the influence of an external load on a shell element damps out rapidly as the distance between the load and the element increases. Stress concentrations occur in the shell elements directly under the center core area of a localized external load. Therefore, the force on the center core, not the entire force distribution, is critical for the assessment of skull responses.
Technical Paper

Two New Areas Concerning Side impact Protection for Passenger Car Occupants

1987-05-01
871114
In vehicle crash accidents, approximately 27% to 30% of passenger car occupant casualties are attributed to side impact accidents. The annual death toll in side impacts for passenger car occupants reached 9,000 in 1975 and 1976 and has been between 7,000 and 8,000 in the 1980's. Since 1977, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and many other groups have conducted a significant amount of research on occupant side impact protection with emphasis on thorax injury reduction. Three important problem areas in the side impact are (1) thorax-to-side interior impact, (2) head impacts with A-pillar/roof rail components and (3) occupant ejection through side doors/windows. While the first problem area has been thoroughly studied, the remaining two areas are seldom discussed and less well understood. Therefore, they are relatively new areas to many people.
Technical Paper

Evaluation of Child Safety Seats Based on Sled Tests

1987-11-01
872210
The injury reducing effectiveness of child safety seats in frontal crashes was evaluated, based on 36 frontal or oblique sled tests run with two or more GM three-year-old dummies in the simulated passenger compartment of a car. Unrestrained, correctly restrained and incorrectly restrained dummies were tested at the range of speeds where most nonminor injuries occur (15-35 mph). Accident data from NHTSA files were used to calibrate a relationship between the front-seat unrestrained dummies' HIC and unrestrained children's risk of serious head injuries; also between torso g's and the risk of serious torso injuries. These relationships were used to predict injury risk for the restrained children as a function of crash speed and to compare it to the risk for unrestrained children. The sled test analysis predicted that the 1984 mix of correctly and incorrectly used safety seats reduced serious injury risk by 40 percent relative to the unrestrained child, in frontal crashes.
Technical Paper

Occupant Injury Patterns in Crashes with Airbag Equipped Government Sponsored Cars

1987-11-01
872216
In 1983, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) initiated two air hag vehicle fleet programs. The objective was to demonstrate that both original equipment and retrofit air bag systems operate in vehicles as intended. As of July 1, 1987, the two fleets together have accumulated over 200 million miles. Data are presented for 112 crashes involving air bag deployment in these government sponsored fleet vehicles in service between 1984 and July 1, 1987. Of the 112 drivers involved in the crashes, 103 sustained either no injury or only minor (AIS 1)[1]1 injuries. Of the nine remaining cases, six were AIS 2 and three AIS 3. To date, the limited data indicate that the air bag deployed as expected in all frontal crashes severe enough to require occupant restraint beyond that provided by the vehicle interior. Additionally, in collisions in which the air bag did not deploy, the crashes were of such low severity that no actuation was expected and none took place.
Technical Paper

Parameter Determination and Vehicle Dynamics Modeling for The National Advanced Driving Simulator of the 2006 BMW 330i

2007-04-16
2007-01-0818
The paper discusses the development of a model for the 2006 BMW 330i for the National Advanced Driving Simulator's (NADS) vehicle dynamics simulation, NADSdyna. The front and rear suspensions are independent strut and link type suspensions modeled using recursive rigid-body dynamics formulations. The suspension springs and shock absorbers are modeled as force elements. The paper includes parameters for front and rear semi-empirical tire models used with NADSdyna. Longitudinal and lateral tire force plots are also included. The NADSdyna model provides state-of-the-art high-fidelity handling dynamics for real-time hardware-in-the-loop simulation. The realism of a particular model depends heavily on how the parameters are obtained from the actual physical system. Complex models do not guarantee high fidelity if the parameters used were not properly measured. Methodologies for determining the parameters are detailed in this paper.
Technical Paper

Antilock Systems for Air-Braked Vehicles

1992-01-01
890113
When a heavy vehicle driver (or in fact a driver of any vehicle) makes a brake application that is too "hard" for conditions - especially when the vehicle is lightly loaded or empty and/or the road is wet or slippery - he is likely to lock some or all of his wheels. Under these conditions, the tractor can jackknife or the trailer can swing out of its lane (if it is a combination-unit vehicle) or the truck can spin out (if it is a single-unit vehicle). Incorporation of an antilock brake system addresses the wheel lock and resultant control loss.
Technical Paper

NHTSA's Rollover Rulemaking Program - Results of Testing and Analysis

1992-02-01
920581
This paper attempts to define and measure factors related to a vehicle's performance that are influential in the causation of rollover accidents. Data are presented which define the rollover involvement rates for many non-vehicular factors. A brief description of the vehicle metrics and the analysis procedures used in the rollover prevention rulemaking program are included along with a set of conclusions. The program evaluated many vehicle metrics related to vehicle rollover, analyzed accidents from 5 states, and compared the two data bases by testing “cause and effect” hypotheses by performing statistical regressions to determine levels of correlation. Location of the crash, urban vs. rural, was a strong predictor of the crash outcome - that is, rollover or non-rollover. Vehicle class and single vehicle accident rate were also statistically significant, as well as, whether or not the vehicle was equipped with anti-lock brakes. Several other driver demographics were significant.
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