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Technical Paper

Permanent Mold Casting and Creep Behavior of Mg - 4 Al - 4 X: (Ca, Ce, La, Sr) Alloys

Creep-resistant magnesium alloys for automotive powertrain applications offer significant potential for vehicle weight reduction. In this study permanent mold casting, microstructure and creep behavior have been investigated for a series of ternary magnesium alloys (Mg-4Al-4X (X: Ca, Ce, La, Sr) wt%) and AXJ530 (Mg-5Al-3Ca-0.15Sr, wt%). A permanent mold was instrumented with twelve thermocouples and mold temperature was monitored during the casting process. Average mold temperature increased from 200°C to 400°C during a typical alloy casting series (fifteen to twenty castings). The cast microstructure for all alloys consists of primary α-Mg globular phase surrounded by eutectic structure which is composed of intermetallic(s) and α-Mg magnesium phases. The primary cell size of the AXJ530 increased from 18 to 24 μm with increasing mold temperature and a similar trend is expected for all alloys.
Technical Paper

Interior Aircraft Noise Computations due to TBL Excitation using the Energy Finite Element Analysis

The Energy Finite Element Analysis (EFEA) has been developed for evaluating the vibro-acoustic behavior of complex systems. In the past EFEA results have been compared successfully to measured data for Naval, automotive, and aircraft systems. The main objective of this paper is to present information about the process of developing EFEA models for two configurations of a business jet, performing analysis for computing the vibration and the interior noise induced from exterior turbulent boundary layer excitation, and discussing the correlation between test data and simulation results. The structural EFEA model is generated from an existing finite element model used for stress analysis during the aircraft design process. Structural elements used in the finite element model for representing the complete complex aircraft structure become part of the EFEA structural model.
Technical Paper

Structure-borne Vehicle Analysis using a Hybrid Finite Element Method

The hybrid FEA method combines the conventional FEA method with the energy FEA (EFEA) for computing the structural vibration in vehicle structures when the excitation is applied on the load bearing stiff structural members. Conventional FEA models are employed for modeling the behavior of the stiff members in the vehicle. In order to account for the effect of the flexible members in the FEA analysis, appropriate damping and spring/mass elements are introduced at the connections between stiff and flexible members. Computing properly the values of these damping and spring/mass elements is important for the overall accuracy of the computations. Utilizing in these computations the analytical solutions for the driving point impedance of infinite or semi-infinite members introduces significant approximations.
Technical Paper

Vehicle Airborne Noise Analysis Using the Energy Finite Element Method

The Energy Finite Element Analysis (EFEA) has been developed for computing the structural vibration and the interior noise level of complex structural-acoustic systems by solving numerically governing differential equations with energy densities as primary variables. In this paper a complete simulation process for evaluating airborne noise in an automotive vehicle is presented and validated through extensive comparison to test data. The theoretical elements associated with the important paths of the noise transfer from the exterior of the vehicle to the interior acoustic space are discussed. The steps required for developing an EFEA model for a vehicle are presented. The model is developed based on the physical construction of the vehicle system and no test measurements are utilized for adjusting the numerical model.
Journal Article

Driver Distraction/Overload Research and Engineering: Problems and Solutions

Driver distraction is a topic of considerable interest, with the public debate centering on the use of cell phones and texting while driving. However, the driver distraction/overload issue is really much larger. It concerns specific tasks such as entering destinations on navigation systems, retrieving songs on MP3 players, accessing web pages, checking stocks, editing spreadsheets, and performing other tasks on smart phones, as well as, more generally, using in-vehicle information systems. Five major problems related to distraction/overload research and engineering and their solutions are addressed in this paper.
Journal Article

Development and Validation of an Analytical Seal Bead Design Model for Automotive Superplastic Forming

With the increasing demand for fuel efficient vehicles, technologies like superplastic forming (SPF) are being developed and implemented to allow for the utilization of lightweight automotive sheet materials. While forming under superplastic conditions leads to increased formability in lightweight alloys, such as aluminum, the slower forming times required by the technology can limit the technology to low to mid production levels. One problem that can increase forming time is the reduction of forming pressure due to pressurizing (forming) gas leaks, during the forming cycle, at the die/sheet/blankholder interface. Traditionally, such leaks have been successfully addressed through the use of a seal bead. However, for advanced die technologies that result in reduced cycle times (such as hot draw mechanical performing, which combine aspects of mechanical preforming of the sheet metal followed by SPF), the use of seal beads can restrict the drawing of sheet material into the forming die.
Technical Paper

Quantifying the Effect of Initialization Errors for Enabling Accurate Online Drivetrain Simulations

Simulations conducted on-board in a vehicle control module can offer valuable information to control strategies. Continued improvements to on-board computing hardware make online simulations of complex dynamic systems such as drivetrains within reach. This capability enables predictions of the system response to various control actions and disturbances. Implementation of online simulations requires model initialization that is consistent with the physical drivetrain state. However, sensor signals and estimated variables are susceptible to errors, compromising the accuracy of the initialization and any future state predictions as the simulation proceeds through the numerical integration process. This paper describes a drivetrain modeling and analysis method that accounts for initialization errors, thereby enabling accurate simulations of system behaviors.
Technical Paper

Characterizing Vehicle Occupant Body Dimensions and Postures Using a Statistical Body Shape Model

Reliable, accurate data on vehicle occupant characteristics could be used to personalize the occupant experience, potentially improving both satisfaction and safety. Recent improvements in 3D camera technology and increased use of cameras in vehicles offer the capability to effectively capture data on vehicle occupant characteristics, including size, shape, posture, and position. In previous work, the body dimensions of standing individuals were reliably estimated by fitting a statistical body shape model (SBSM) to data from a consumer-grade depth camera (Microsoft Kinect). In the current study, the methodology was extended to consider seated vehicle occupants. The SBSM used in this work was developed using laser scan data gathered from 147 children with stature ranging from 100 to 160 cm and BMI from 12 to 27 kg/m2 in various sitting postures.
Technical Paper

Statistical Modeling of Automotive Seat Shapes

Automotive seats are commonly described by one-dimensional measurements, including those documented in SAE J2732. However, 1-D measurements provide minimal information on seat shape. The goal of this work was to develop a statistical framework to analyze and model the surface shapes of seats by using techniques similar to those that have been used for modeling human body shapes. The 3-D contour of twelve driver seats of a pickup truck and sedans were scanned and aligned, and 408 landmarks were identified using a semi-automatic process. A template mesh of 18,306 vertices was morphed to match the scan at the landmark positions, and the remaining nodes were automatically adjusted to match the scanned surface. A principal component (PC) analysis was performed on the resulting homologous meshes. Each seat was uniquely represented by a set of PC scores; 10 PC scores explained 95% of the total variance. This new shape description has many applications.
Technical Paper

Closed-Form Structural Stress Solutions for Spot Welds in Square Plates under Central Bending Conditions

A new closed-form structural stress solution for a spot weld in a square thin plate under central bending conditions is derived based on the thin plate theory. The spot weld is treated as a rigid inclusion and the plate is treated as a thin plate. The boundary conditions follow those of the published solution for a rigid inclusion in a square plate under counter bending conditions. The new closed-form solution indicates that structural stress solution near the rigid inclusion on the surface of the plate along the symmetry plane is larger than those for a rigid inclusion in an infinite plate and a finite circular plate with pinned and clamped outer boundaries under central bending conditions. When the radius distance becomes large and approaches to the outer boundary, the new analytical stress solution approaches to the reference stress whereas the other analytical solutions do not.
Technical Paper

Finite Element Analyses of Structural Stresses near Dissimilar Spot Joints in Lap-Shear Specimens

Structural stress distributions near nearly rigid, dissimilar and similar spot joints in lap-shear specimens are investigated by 3-D finite element analyses. A set of accurate closed-form structural stress solutions is first presented. The closed-form structural stress solutions were derived for a rigid inclusion in a square thin plate under various loading conditions with the weak boundary conditions along outer edges or semi-circular paths by satisfying the equilibrium conditions. Finite element analyses with different joint material behaviors, element types and mesh designs are conducted to examine the structural stress solutions near the spot joints in lap-shear specimens. The results of the finite element analyses indicate that the computational structural stress solutions on the edge of the joint depend on the joint material behavior, element type, and mesh design.
Technical Paper

Decomposition-based Assembly Synthesis of Automotive Body Structures

This paper presents an extension of our previous work on decomposition-based assembly synthesis [1], where the 3D finite element model of a vehicle body-in-white (BIW) is optimally decomposed into a set of components considering the stiffness of the assembled structure under given loading conditions, and the manufacturability and assemblability of each component. The stiffness of the assembled structure is evaluated by finite element analyses, where spot-welded joints are modeled as linear torsional springs. In order to allow close examinations of the trade-off among stiffness, manufacturability, and assemblability, the optimal decomposition problem is solved by multi-objective genetic algorithm [2,3], with graph-based crossover [4,5], combined with FEM analyses, generating Pareto optimal solutions. Two software programs are developed to implement the proposed method.
Technical Paper

A Test Method for Quantifying Residual Stress Due to Heat Treatment in Metals

Quantification of residual stresses is an important engineering problem impacting manufacturabilty and durability of metallic components. An area of particular concern is residual stresses that can develop during heat treatment of metallic components. Many heat treatments, especially in heat treatable cast aluminum alloys, involve a water-quenching step immediately after a solution-treatment cycle. This rapid water quench has the potential to induce high residual stresses in regions of the castings that experience large thermal gradients. These stresses may be partially relaxed during the aging portion of the heat treatment. The goal of this research was to develop a test sample and quench technique to quantify the stresses created by steep thermal gradients during rapid quenching of cast aluminum. The development and relaxation of residual stresses during the aging cycle was studied experimentally with the use of strain gauges.
Technical Paper

Design Optimization and Reliability Estimation with Incomplete Uncertainty Information

Existing methods for design optimization under uncertainty assume that a high level of information is available, typically in the form of data. In reality, however, insufficient data prevents correct inference of probability distributions, membership functions, or interval ranges. In this article we use an engine design example to show that optimal design decisions and reliability estimations depend strongly on uncertainty characterization. We contrast the reliability-based optimal designs to the ones obtained using worst-case optimization, and ask the question of how to obtain non-conservative designs with incomplete uncertainty information. We propose an answer to this question through the use of Bayesian statistics. We estimate the truck's engine reliability based only on available samples, and demonstrate that the accuracy of our estimates increases as more samples become available.
Technical Paper

Validation of the EFEA Method through Correlation with Conventional FEA and SEA Results

The Energy Finite Element Analysis(EFEA) is a recent development for high frequency vibro-acoustic analysis, and constitutes an evolution in the area of high frequency computations. The EFEA is a wave based approach, while the SEA is a modal based approach. In this paper the similarities in the theoretical development of the two methods are outlined. The main scope of this paper is to establish the validity of the EFEA by analyzing several complex structural-acoustic systems. The EFEA solutions are compared successfully to SEA results and to solutions obtained from extremely dense conventional FEA models.
Technical Paper

Data-Based Motion Prediction

A complete scheme for motion prediction based on motion capture data is presented. The scheme rests on three main components: a special posture representation, a diverse motion capture database and prediction method. Most prior motion prediction schemes have been based on posture representations based on well-known local or global angles. Difficulties have arisen when trying to satisfy constraints, such as placing a hand on a target or scaling the posture for a subject of different stature. Inverse kinematic methods based on such angles require optimization that become increasingly complex and computationally intensive for longer linkages. A different representation called stretch pivot coordinates is presented that avoids these difficulties. The representation allows for easy rescaling for stature and other linkage length variations and satisfaction of endpoint constraints, all without optimization allowing for rapid real time use.
Technical Paper

Analysis of Premixed Charge Compression Ignition Combustion With a Sequential Fluid Mechanics-Multizone Chemical Kinetics Model

We have developed a methodology for analysis of Premixed Charge Compression Ignition (PCCI) engines that applies to conditions in which there is some stratification in the air-fuel distribution inside the cylinder at the time of combustion. The analysis methodology consists of two stages: first, a fluid mechanics code is used to determine temperature and equivalence ratio distributions as a function of crank angle, assuming motored conditions. The distribution information is then used for grouping the mass in the cylinder into a two-dimensional (temperature-equivalence ratio) array of zones. The zone information is then handed on to a detailed chemical kinetics model that calculates combustion, emissions and engine efficiency information. The methodology applies to situations where chemistry and fluid mechanics are weakly linked.
Technical Paper

Determination of Assembly Stresses in Aluminum Knuckles

In this paper, an analytical method is proposed for determining the stress distributions in steering knuckle/tapered stud assemblies. The method is based on solutions of the plane stress thick cylinder interference fit problem with modifications to account for the effects of stud taper and dissimilar component materials. The analytical solutions are applied to knuckle/tapered stud assemblies. The results from the analytical solutions are compared to those from a finite element analysis. It is shown that the analytical and FEA results are in good agreement for several load and frictional conditions, and the hoop and radial stress solutions presented in this paper are good engineering solutions to the knuckle/tapered stud problem where the draw distance is provided.
Technical Paper

Combining an Energy Boundary Element with an Energy Finite Element Analysis for Airborne Noise Simulations

The Energy Boundary Element Analysis (EBEA) has been utilized in the past for computing the exterior acoustic field at high frequencies (above ∼400Hz) around vehicle structures and numerical results have been compared successfully to test data [1, 2 and 3]. The Energy Finite Element Analysis (EFEA) has been developed for computing the structural vibration of complex structures at high frequencies and validations have been presented in previous publications [4, 5]. In this paper the EBEA is utilized for computing the acoustic field around a vehicle structure due to external acoustic noise sources. The computed exterior acoustic field comprises the excitation for the EFEA analysis. Appropriate loading functions have been developed for representing the exterior acoustic loading in the EFEA simulations, and a formulation has been developed for considering the acoustic treatment applied on the interior side of structural panels.
Technical Paper

A Substructuring Formulation for the Energy Finite Element Analysis

In applications of the Energy Finite Element Analysis (EFEA) there is an increasing need for developing comprehensive models with a large number of elements which include both structural and interior fluid elements, while certain parts of the structure are considered to be exposed to an external fluid loading. In order to accommodate efficient computations when using simulation models with a large number of elements, joints, and domains, a substructuring computational capability has been developed. The new algorithm is based on dividing the EFEA model into substructures with internal and interface degrees of freedom. The system of equations for each substructure is assembled and solved separately and the information is condensed to the interface degrees of freedom. The condensed systems of equations from each substructure are assembled in a reduced global system of equations. Once the global system of equations has been solved the solution for each substructure is pursued.