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Technical Paper

Design Considerations for a Compatibility Test Procedure

2002-03-04
2002-01-1022
A major focus of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) vehicle compatibility and aggressivity research program is the development of a laboratory test procedure to evaluate compatibility. This paper is written to explain the associated goals, issues, and design considerations and to review the preliminary results from this ongoing research program. One of NHTSA's activities supporting the development of a test procedure involves investigating the use of an mobile deformable barrier (MDB) into vehicle test to evaluate both the self-protection (crashworthiness) and the partner-protection (compatibility) of the subject vehicle. For this development, the MDB is intended to represent the median or expected crash partner. This representiveness includes such vehicle characteristics as weight, size, and frontal stiffness. This paper presents distributions of vehicle measurements based on 1996 fleet registration data.
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

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

Improving Safety Belt Acceptability to the Consumer

1979-02-01
790681
Currently, consumers must contend with many comfort and convenience problems whenever they use a manually operated (“active”) safety belt. Such problems are prevalent not only in older models but in new cars as well. Beginning with 1982 models, most auto manufacturers plan to install automatic safety belts to meet new Federal requirements for passive occupant protection. To reduce the likelihood of consumer rejection and non-use of automatic as well as manual belt systems, research has been conducted to develop performance specifications for improved comfort and convenience. This paper discusses specifications and criteria to improve the safety belts by reducing comfort and convenience variables for both manual and automatic systems.
Technical Paper

Hardware Evaluation of Heavy Truck Side and Rear Object Detection Systems

1995-02-01
951010
This paper focuses on two types of electronics-based object detection systems for heavy truck applications: those sensing the presence of objects to the rear of the vehicle, and those sensing the presence of objects on the right side of the vehicle. The rearward sensing systems are intended to aid drivers when backing their vehicles, typically at very low “crawl” speeds. Six rear object detection systems that were commercially available at the time that this study was initiated were evaluated. The right side looking systems are intended primarily as supplements to side view mirror systems and as an aid for detecting the presence of adjacent vehicles when making lane changes or merging maneuvers. Four side systems, two commercially available systems and two prototypes, were evaluated.
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