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Technical Paper

The Inflatable Curtain (IC) - A New Head Protection System in Side Impacts

Car accident investigations have shown that the head, the chest and the abdomen are the three most vulnerable body regions in side impacts, when serious-to-fatal (MAIS 3-6) injuries are considered. Injuries are much more common to occupants seated on the struck side than to those on the non-struck side. The development of new side impact protection systems has therefore been focused on struck side occupants. The first airbag system for side impact protection, jointly developed by Volvo and Autoliv, was introduced on the market in 1994. The SIPS bag is seat-mounted and protects mainly the chest and the abdomen, and also to some extent the head, since the head's lateral relative displacement is reduced by the side airbag, thereby keeping the head inside the car's outer profile. However, if an external object is exposed in the head area, for example in a truck-to-car side impact or in a single car collision into a pole or a tree, there is a need for an additional head protection device.
Technical Paper

The Door Mounted Inflatable Curtain

It has been shown that Inflatable Curtains have the potential to reduce head injuries in side impacts and the system has accordingly been introduced on a growing number of car models. There is also a potential benefit in rollover situations. This paper only consider performance in situations with belted occupants. To date, it has not been possible to implement an Inflatable Curtain in convertible vehicles because they lack a roof. The challenge of the Door Mounted Inflatable Curtain (DMIC) has been to overcome the lack of support and fixation possibilities offered by a roof. This paper includes a description of the DMIC and how it was integrated into the vehicle structure. The paper will also show how to create the space and support needed to utilize the internal stiffness and make it possible to fill the bag in time. The impact attenuation and ejection protection functions of the DMIC will be demonstrated.
Technical Paper

Testing and Verification of Adaptive Cruise Control and Collision Warning with Brake Support by Using HIL Simulations

This paper presents how hardware in the loop (HIL) simulations have been used for testing during the development of the adaptive cruise control (ACC) and collision warning with brake support (CWBS) functions implemented in the Volvo S80. Both the brake system controller and the controller where the ACC and CWBS functions were implemented were tested. The HIL simulator was used for automated batch simulations in which different controller software releases were analyzed from both system, fail-safe and functional performance perspectives. This paper presents the challenges and the benefits of using HIL simulations when developing distributed active safety functions. Some specific simulation results are analyzed and discussed. The conclusion shows that although it is difficult and time-consuming to develop a complete HIL simulation environment for active safety functions such as ACC and CWBS, the benefits justify the investment.
Technical Paper

Surface Flow Visualization on a Full-Scale Passenger Car with Quantitative Tuft Image Processing

Flow visualization techniques are widely used in aerodynamics to investigate the surface trace pattern. In this experimental investigation, the surface flow pattern over the rear end of a full-scale passenger car is studied using tufts. The movement of the tufts is recorded with a DSLR still camera, which continuously takes pictures. A novel and efficient tuft image processing algorithm has been developed to extract the tuft orientations in each image. This allows the extraction of the mean tuft angle and other such statistics. From the extracted tuft angles, streamline plots are created to identify points of interest, such as saddle points as well as separation and reattachment lines. Furthermore, the information about the tuft orientation in each time step allows studying steady and unsteady flow phenomena. Hence, the tuft image processing algorithm provides more detailed information about the surface flow than the traditional tuft method.
Technical Paper

Study of EGR and Turbocharger Combinations and Their Influence on Diesel Engine’s Efficiency and Emissions

An experimental study of EGR and turbocharging concepts has been performed on an experimental 2.0-litre 4-cylinder turbocharged Euro6 light-duty diesel engine. The purpose of the study was to investigate the emissions and fuel consumption trade-off for different concept combinations. The impact of low-pressure and high-pressure EGR was studied in terms of engine-out emissions and fuel consumption. Moreover, the influence of single-stage and two-stage turbocharging was investigated in combination with the EGR systems, and how the engine efficiency could be further improved after engine calibration optimization. During low load engine operation where throttling may be required to achieve the desired low-pressure EGR rate, the difference in fuel consumption impact was studied for exhaust throttling and intake throttling, respectively. The cooling impact on high-pressure EGR was compared in terms of emissions and fuel consumption.
Technical Paper

Simulation of Vehicle Pitch in Sled Testing

In HYGE sled simulations of 35 mph barrier crashes with the Volvo 760 dummy kinematics and injury criteria have been different from what can be observed in barrier crashes One of the major differences between sled testing and barrier crashes is the car pitch in the barrier crashes. In order to improve the sled testing a method to simulate pitch on the sled was developed. Dummy kinematics and injury criteria from sled tests with pitch simulation have proved to be in good agreement with results from barrier crashes. The paper will give a more detailed description of vehicle pitch, the sled pitch arrangement and a comparison of dummy kinematics and injury criteria from barrier crashes and sled testing with and without pitch displacement.
Technical Paper

Severe Frontal Collisions with Partial Overlap - Two Decades of Car Safety Development

Frontal Severe Partial Overlap Collisions (SPOC) also called small overlap crashes pose special challenges with respect to structural design as well as occupant protection. In the early 1990s, the SPOC test method was developed addressing 20-40% overlap against a fixed rigid barrier with initial velocities up to 65 km/h. The knowledge gained has been used in the design of Volvo vehicles since then. Important design principles include front side members orientated along the wheel envelopes together with a strong support structure utilizing a space frame principle with beams loaded mainly in tension and compression. This novel setup was first introduced in the 850-model in 1991 and has been refined and patented (2001) in later Volvo front structures. Among the design principles are multiple front side members on each side, helping energy absorption efficiency and robustness.
Technical Paper

Reducing Pressure Fluctuations at High Loads by Means of Charge Stratification in HCCI Combustion with Negative Valve Overlap

Future demands for improvements in the fuel economy of gasoline passenger car engines will require the development and implementation of advanced combustion strategies, to replace, or combine with the conventional spark ignition strategy. One possible strategy is homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) achieved using negative valve overlap (NVO). However, several issues need to be addressed before this combustion strategy can be fully implemented in a production vehicle, one being to increase the upper load limit. One constraint at high loads is the combustion becoming too rapid, leading to excessive pressure-rise rates and large pressure fluctuations (ringing), causing noise. In this work, efforts were made to reduce these pressure fluctuations by using a late injection during the later part of the compression. A more appropriate acronym than HCCI for such combustion is SCCI (Stratified Charge Compression Ignition).
Journal Article

Performance Studies and Correlation between Vehicle- and Rapid- Aged Commercial Lean NOx Trap Catalysts

Even though substantial improvements have been made for the lean NOx trap (LNT) catalyst in recent years, the durability still remains problematic because of the sulfur poisoning and sintering of the precious metals at high operating temperatures. Hence, commercial LNT catalysts were aged and tested in order to investigate their performance and activity degradation compared to the fresh catalyst, and establish a proper correlation between the aging methods used. The target of this study is to provide useful information for regeneration strategies and optimize the catalyst management for better performance and durability. With this goal in mind, two different aging procedures were implemented in this investigation. A catalyst was vehicle-aged in the vehicle chassis dynamometer for 100000 km, thus exposed to real conditions. Whereas, an accelerated aging method was used by subjecting a fresh LNT catalyst at 800 °C for 24 hours in an oven under controlled conditions.
Technical Paper

Passenger AIR-BAG Status Indication Awareness Study

With the growing concern about the potential dangers with rear facing child seats placed in the front seat of passenger airbag equipped cars, various systems are being considered for deactivation of the airbag. To increase the awareness of and confidence in these proposed systems, information displays were developed for the purpose of telling the status of the passenger airbag system and to warn when necessary. A study of the effectiveness, understanding and acceptance of a selection of such information displays was jointly undertaken by Volvo Car Corporation, SAAB Automobile AB and the Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute. Respondents of various age and demographic composition, parents and grand parents of small children, were exposed to six different sets of information displays and were asked to interpret them and also rank which information displays that would most clearly convey the message.
Technical Paper

Organic Evolution of Development Organizations - An Experience Report

In areas such as Active Safety, new technologies, designs (e.g. AUTOSAR) and methods are introduced at a rapid pace. To address the new demands, and also requirements on Functional Safety imposed by ISO 26262, the support for engineering methods, including tools and data management, needs to evolve as well. Generic and file-based data management tools, like spreadsheet tools, are popular in the industry due to their flexibility and legacy in the industry but provide poor control and traceability, while rigid and special-purpose tools provide structure and control of data but with limited evolvability. As organizations become agile, the need for flexible data management increases. Since products become more complex and developed in larger and distributed teams, the need for more unified, controlled, and consistent data increases.
Technical Paper

Multidisciplinary Simulation Model for the Balancing of Powertrain Combustion, Control and Components for Optimal Fuel Consumption, Emissions, Cost and Performance for a Diesel Engine Powered Passenger Car

Passenger cars equipped with diesel engines will meet challenging emission legislation for the coming decade, with introduction of Euro6 and Euro7, which comprises reduced NOX emissions and possibly new driving cycles including off-cycle limits. The technology measures to meet these legislative limits comprise a broad spectrum of engine and aftertreatment, i.e., engine measures such as improved fuel injection with respect to mass and timing, improved exhaust gas recirculation, improved warm-up and reduced friction, as well as aftertreatment measures such as selective catalytic reduction and lean NOX trap in combination with diesel particulate filter, and the thereby associated engine control. The resulting technology matrix is therefore large, and calls for a multidisciplinary simulation approach for appropriate selection and optimization of technology and control with the objectives and constraints of emissions, fuel consumption, performance and cost.
Technical Paper

Multi-material Approach with Integrated Joining Technologies in the New Volvo S80

In May 1998 Volvo launched its most exclusive car model so far, the Volvo S80, which is aimed to compete with upper luxury segment products. The car is produced in the new production facility in the Torslanda plant in Sweden. Among the more highlighted features were a transversely mounted in-line six cylinder engine with a specially designed gearbox, electronic multiplex technology with 18 computers in the network, and safety features like stability and traction control (STC), front seats with integrated antiwhiplash system (WHIPS) and inflatable curtain (IC) for improved side impact protection. To fulfill the product's high demands on safety, quality and environmental care, the design, materials selection and assembly of the car body with high precision had to be very carefully engineered. As in previous product-/process development a holistic and concurrent engineering approach was necessary.
Technical Paper

Location of the First Auto-Ignition Sites for Two HCCI Systems in a Direct Injection Engine

To elucidate the processes controlling the auto-ignition timing and overall combustion duration in homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) engines, the distribution of the auto-ignition sites, in both space and time, was studied. The auto-ignition locations were investigated using optical diagnosis of HCCI combustion, based on laser induced fluorescence (LIF) measurements of formaldehyde in an optical engine with fully variable valve actuation. This engine was operated in two different modes of HCCI. In the first, auto-ignition temperatures were reached by heating the inlet air, while in the second, residual mass from the previous combustion cycle was trapped using a negative valve overlap. The fuel was introduced directly into the combustion chamber in both approaches. To complement these experiments, 3-D numerical modeling of the gas exchange and compression stroke events was done for both HCCI-generating approaches.
Technical Paper

Ion Current Sensing in an Optical HCCI Engine with Negative Valve Overlap

Ion current sensors have high potential utility for obtaining feedback signals directly from the combustion chamber in internal combustion engines. This paper describes experiments performed in a single-cylinder optical engine operated in HCCI mode with negative valve overlap to explore this potential. A high-speed CCD camera was used to visualize the combustion progress in the cylinder, and the photographs obtained were compared with the ion current signals. The optical data indicate that the ions responsible for the chemiluminescence from the HCCI combustion have to be in contact with the sensing electrode for an ion current to start flowing through the measurement circuit. This also means that there will be an offset between the time at which 50% of the fuel mass has burned and 50% of the ion current peak value is reached, which is readily explained by the results presented in the paper.
Technical Paper

Interaction between Fuel Jets and Prevailing Combustion During Closely-Coupled Injections in an Optical LD Diesel Engine

Two imaging techniques are used to investigate the interaction between developed combustion from earlier injections and partially oxidized fuel (POF) of a subsequent injection. The latter is visualized by using planar laser induced fluorescence (PLIF) of formaldehyde and poly-cyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. High speed imaging captures the natural luminescence (NL) of the prevailing combustion. Three different fuel injection strategies are studied. One strategy consists of two pilot injections, with modest separations after each, followed by single main and post injections. Both of the other two strategies have three pilots followed by single main and post injections. The separations after the second and third pilots are several times shorter than in the reference case (making them closely-coupled). The closely-coupled cases have more linear heat release rates (HRR) which lead to much lower combustion noise levels.
Technical Paper

Experimental Evaluation of Novel Thermal Barrier Coatings in a Single Cylinder Light Duty Diesel Engine

The objective of this investigation was to improve the thermal properties of plasma sprayed thermal barrier coatings (TBC) for internal combustion engines. There is a need for further reduction of thermal conductivity and volumetric heat capacity and the negative effects on heat loss and combustion phasing of surface roughness and permeable porosity, typical for plasma sprayed coatings, should be minimized. Four measures for improvement of TBC properties were evaluated: i) modification of the coating's microstructure by using a novel suspension plasma spraying method, ii) application of gadolinium-zirconate, a novel ceramic material with low thermal conductivity, iii) polishing of the coating to achieve low surface roughness, and iv) sealing of the porous coating surface with a polysilazane. Six coating variants with different combinations of the selected measures were applied on the piston crown and evaluated in a single cylinder light duty diesel engine.
Technical Paper

Evaluation of Hazard Identification Methods in the Automotive Domain

Many automotive electronic systems must be developed using a safety process. A preliminary hazard analysis is a first and an important step in such a process. This experimental study evaluates two methods for hazard identification using an electrical steering column lock system. Both methods are found to be applicable for hazard identification in an automotive context. It is also concluded that the induction with the failure modes method is less time consuming and easier to use than the method based on induction with generic low level hazards. Further, two proposals are presented to improve efficiency and consistency, reuse of generic hazards by component profiles and a domain specific catalogue of vehicle phases.
Technical Paper

Evaluating a Vehicle Climate Control System with a Passive Sensor Manikin coupled with a Thermal Comfort Model

In a previous study, a passive sensor (HVAC) manikin coupled with a human thermal model was used to predict the thermal comfort of human test participants. The manikin was positioned among the test participants while they were collectively exposed to a mild transient heat up within a thermally asymmetric chamber. Ambient conditions were measured using the HVAC manikin’s distributed sensor system, which measures air velocity, air temperature, radiant heat flux, and relative humidity. These measurements were supplied as input to a human thermal model to predict thermophysiological response and subsequently thermal sensation and comfort. The model predictions were shown to accurately reproduce the group trends and the “time to comfort” at which a transition occurred from a state of thermal discomfort to comfort. In the current study, the effectiveness of using a coupled HVAC manikin-model system to evaluate a vehicle climate control system was investigated.
Technical Paper

European Side-markers Effect on Traffic Safety

In 1993 new European legislation regarding side-markers for passenger cars became effective. Volvo requested the TNO-Human Factors Research Institute (HFRI) to investigate the possible safety benefit of this European side-markers configuration. A test panel at TNO- HFRI was used to determine the difference in response time and detection error of drivers, confronted with slides of vehicles with and without the mentioned new vehicle side-marker configuration in several visibility conditions, crossing illumination and different vehicle approach angles. The investigation showed a significant faster vehicle recognition with less detection errors in case the approaching car was equipped with the bright amber side-markers. This improved vehicle conspicuity can be a benefit in crash avoidance, especially when the driver approaches a crossing with complex light environment and reduced visibility.