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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

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

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

Numerical Simulation of a Vehicle Side Impact Test: Development. Application and Design Iterations

This paper describes a numerical simulation technique applicable to the FMVSS 214 side impact test through the use of the finite element method (FEM) technology. The paper outlines the development of the side impact dummy (SID), moving deformable barrier (MDB) and the test vehicle FEM models, as well as the development of new advanced constitutive models of materials and algorithms in LS-DYNA3D which are related to the topic. Presented in the paper are some initial simulation problems which were encountered and solved, as well as the correlation of the simulation data to the physical test.
Technical Paper

LS-DYNA3D Finite Element Model of Side Impact Dummy SID

Side impact dummy (SID) is a human-like test device used in the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) mandated side impact test of vehicles sold in the USA. A finite element model of SID has been developed at GM as a part of a project to simulate the side impact test. The objective is to better predict physical test results by replacing traditional rigid-body lumped parameter models with a finite element model. The project included, besides mesh generation, the development of new LS-DYNA3D constitutive models for rubber and foam-like materials, and enhancements of contact interface and other algorithms. This paper describes the GM SID finite element model and its performance in side impact test simulations.
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

Evaluation of Impact Test Accelerations: A Damage Index for the Head and Torso

The head Severity Index concept has attracted widespread attention in the automotive industry. This index is intended to estimate human survivability in a systematic way without relying on judgment values. It is employed for evaluating the probability of internal head injury for those indeterminate conditions where the human tolerance limits are not clearly defined. This paper discusses a damage index which is believed to be superior to the current Severity Index in several respects: 1. The concept is applicable to internal injuries of the torso as well as the head. 2. It is felt to describe the actual damage mechanism more directly. 3. It fits the Wayne State head tolerance curve better than the Severity Index. 4. It is suitable for analyzing impact pulses of any time duration. Examples cited in this paper include rocket sled exposures (250 ms duration) down to severe head impacts (5 ms duration). 5. It is more convenient to employ.
Technical Paper

Energy-Absorbing Polyurethane Foam to Improve Vehicle Crashworthiness

Federal legislation mandates that automotive OEMS provide occupant protection in collisions involving front and side impacts This legislation, which is to be phased-in over several years, covers not only passenger cars but also light-duty trucks and multipurpose passenger vehicles (MPVs) having a gross vehicle weigh rating (GVWR) of 8,500 lb (3,850 kg) or less. During a frontal impact, occupants within the vehicle undergo rapid changes in velocity. This is primarily due to rapid vehicle deceleration caused by the rigid nature of the vehicle's metal frame components and body assembly. Many of today's vehicles incorporate deformable, energy-absorbing (EA) structures within the vehicle structure to manage the collision energy and slow the deceleration which in turn can lower the occupant velocity relative to the vehicle. Occupant velocities can be higher in light-duty trucks and MPVs having a full-frame structure resulting in increased demands on the supplemental restraint system (SRS).
Technical Paper

Digital Recording of Vehicle Crash Data

This paper discusses the development and implementation of a 16 channel data acquisition system for high “G” impact testing which includes a self-contained, on-board data acquisition unit, a programmer-exerciser and debriefing subsystems. The microprocessor controlled, on-board unit contains all signal conditioning, A/D conversion hardware and logic to store 4K 12 bit samples of data per channel. This unit will debrief into an oscilloscope, a desk-top computer or a large disk-based minicomputer system. Advantages over previous systems include the elimination of costly hardware (such as umbilical cables and recorders), and a reduction in pre-test preparation and data processing time.
Technical Paper

Computer Aided Design Analysis of Instrument Panel Impact Zone

In anticipation of complying with European standards for impact protection, an instrument panel design was analyzed to determine A. impact zone boundaries B. impact test velocitiesfor the head of a front seat passenger. Chrysler computer aided design (C.A.D.) surfacing capabilities were utilized in the solution. Early knowledge of impact zone location is important to intelligent design decisions; knowledge of impact velocities aids in performing compliance testing.
Technical Paper

Brain Injury Risk Assessment of Frontal Crash Test Results

An objective, biomechanically based assessment is made of the risks of life-threatening brain injury of frontal crash test results. Published 15 ms HIC values for driver and right front passenger dummies of frontal barrier crash tests conducted by Transport Canada and NHTSA are analyzed using the brain injury risk curve of Prasad and Mertz. Ninety-four percent of the occupants involved in the 30 mph, frontal barrier compliance tests had risks of life-threatening brain injury less than 5 percent. Only 3 percent had risks greater than 16 percent which corresponds to 15 ms HIC > 1000. For belt restrained occupants without head contact with the interior, the risks of life-threatening brain injury were less than 2 percent. In contrast, for the more severe NCAP test condition, 27 percent of the drivers and 21 percent of the passengers had life-threatening brain injury risks greater than 16 percent.