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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

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

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

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

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.
Technical Paper

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

2008-04-14
2008-01-1498
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

Strategies for Passenger Car Designs to Improve Occupant Protection in Real World Side Crashes

1993-03-01
930482
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) upgraded the side impact protection requirement in Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 214 and added dynamic requirements to reduce the likelihood of thoracic injuries in side crashes. As part of the agency's research in developing the requirements of the standard, NHTSA developed a mathematical model for simulation of side impacts. This paper investigates the overall safety performance, based on Thoracic Trauma Index (TTI) as the criteria for passenger cars in real world side crashes, with the aid of the simulation model. A Thoracic Trauma Index Factor (TTIF) is utilized to compare relative safety performance of passenger cars under various conditions of impact. The concept of relating energy dissipation in various side structure and padding countermeasures is used to develop a family of curves that are representative of a design platform.
Technical Paper

NHTSA’s Vehicle Compatibility Research Program

1999-03-01
1999-01-0071
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is conducting a research program to investigate the crash compatibility of passenger cars, light trucks and vans (LTV’s) in vehicle-to-vehicle collisions. NHTSA has conducted a series of eight full-scale vehicle-to-vehicle crash tests to evaluate vehicle compatibility issues. Tests were conducted using four bullet vehicles representing different vehicle classes striking a mid-size sedan in both side and oblique frontal crash configurations. The test results show a good correlation between vehicle aggressivity metrics and injury parameters measured in the struck car for the frontal offset tests, but not for the side impact tests.
Technical Paper

An Overview of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Light Vehicle Antilock Brake Systems Research Program

1999-03-01
1999-01-1286
This paper presents an overview of currently ongoing research by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in the area of light vehicle (passenger cars and light trucks) Antilock Brake Systems (ABS). This paper serves as a lead-in to other papers that will be presented during this session. Several statistical crash data studies have found there to be little or no net safety benefit from the implementation of four-wheel ABS on passenger automobiles. Typically, these studies have found ABS to be associated with: 1. A statistically significant decrease in multi-vehicle crashes. 2. A statistically significant decrease in fatal pedestrian strikes. 3. A statistically significant increase in single-vehicle road departure crashes. The safety disbenefit due to the third finding approximately cancels the safety benefits from the first two findings.
Technical Paper

Parameter Determination and Vehicle Dynamics Modeling for the NADS of the 1998 Chevrolet Malibu

2001-03-05
2001-01-0140
The paper discusses the development of a model for a 1998 Chevrolet Malibu for the National Advanced Driving Simulator’s (NADS) vehicle dynamics simulation, NADSdyna. The Malibu is the third vehicle modeled for the NADS, and this is the third paper dealing with model development. SAE Paper 970564 contains details of the model for the 1994 Ford Taurus and SAE Paper 1999–01-0121 contains details of the model for the 1997 Jeep Cherokee. 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 elements in the rigid body formulation. To complement the vehicle dynamics for the NADS application, subsystem models that include tire forces, braking, powertrain, aerodynamics, and steering are added to the rigid body dynamics model. The models provide state-of-the-art high fidelity vehicle handling dynamics for real-time simulation.
Technical Paper

Impact Response of Restrained PMHS in Frontal Sled Tests: Skeletal Deformation Patterns Under Seat Belt Loading

2009-11-02
2009-22-0001
This study evaluated the response of restrained post-mortem human subjects (PMHS) in 40 km/h frontal sled tests. Eight male PMHS were restrained on a rigid planar seat by a custom 3-point shoulder and lap belt. A video motion tracking system measured three-dimensional trajectories of multiple skeletal sites on the torso allowing quantification of ribcage deformation. Anterior and superior displacement of the lower ribcage may have contributed to sternal fractures occurring early in the event, at displacement levels below those typically considered injurious, suggesting that fracture risk is not fully described by traditional definitions of chest deformation. The methodology presented here produced novel kinematic data that will be useful in developing biofidelic human models.
Technical Paper

Field test of a pedestrian safety zone program for older pedestrians

2001-06-04
2001-06-0104
The objectives of this study were to develop and apply procedures for defining pedestrian safety zones for the older (age 65+) adult and to develop, implement and evaluate a countermeasure program in the defined zones. Zone definition procedures were applied to two cities: Phoenix and Chicago. Extensive countermeasure programs were implemented in both cities. A complete crash-based evaluation was conducted only for the city of Phoenix where data showed significant reductions in zone crashes to 65+ pedestrians over a period in which the city's population and overall pedestrian crashes increased. It was concluded that the zone process resulted in an effective and efficient means of deploying pedestrian countermeasures for the older adult.
Technical Paper

Foundations and elements of the NHTSA Thor ALPHA ATD design

2001-06-04
2001-06-0107
Early influences upon Thor ATD development are described, and the path of Thor development is traced up to the release of the current Thor ALPHA ATD design. Since the display of the first Thor ATD prototype at the 15th ESV Conference in Melbourne in 1996, Thor has undergone extensive test and evaluation on an international basis in cooperation with many partner institutions. This paper summarizes some of the lessons learned from this broad test experience, and documents actions which have been undertaken to upgrade the Thor product to ALPHA status in light of this experience.
Technical Paper

Enhancing post-crash vehicle safety through an automatic collision notification system

2001-06-04
2001-06-0085
In August of 2000, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) completed an Automated Collision Notification (ACN) Field Operational Test (FOT) in Erie County, New York, that combined crash sensing, position location, and wireless communications technology in a system with the goal of saving lives and reducing disabilities from injuries by providing faster and more informed emergency medical responses to serious injury crashes. The ACN FOT Team designed and built an ACN system prior to the start of the test period in July 1997. ACN in-vehicle systems were than installed in 850 vehicles. The crash notification messages were delivered to emergency response and dispatch equipment installed at the Erie County Sheriff's Office, which served as the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) for this FOT.
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