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Technical Paper

A Database for Crash Avoidance Research

A database derived from information obtained in state police accident reports has been developed to support problem identification and counter-measure development in crash avoidance research. This database is sufficient in size to permit analyses of the relationship between specific vehicle design characteristics and crash involvement. Preliminary analyses of this database suggest that is is comparable with the nation's crash experience.
Technical Paper

A Statistical Analysis of Vehicle Rollover Propensity and Vehicle Stability

This report documents the accident data collection, processing and analysis methodology used by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in a major agency agency investigation of the rollover propensity of light duty vehicles. Specifically, these efforts were initiated in response to two petitions for rulemaking requesting the development of a standard for rollover stability. Logistic regression models were used to investigate the ability of a number of stability measures to predict vehicle rollover propensity, while accounting for a number of driver and environmental factors. It is not the intent of this paper to document formal agency policy in the area of any possible rulemaking efforts, and as such, references to these activities are not discussed. The reader can obtain information on this activity through normal agency procedures.
Technical Paper

A Three-Dimensional Finite Element Analysis of the Human Brain Under Combined Rotational and Translational Accelerations

Finite element modelling has been used to study the evolution of strain in a model of the human brain under impulsive acceleration loadings. A cumulative damage measure, based on the calculation of the volume fraction of the brain that has experienced a specific level of stretch, is used as a possible predictor for deformation-related brain injury. The measure is based on the maximum principal strain calculated from an objective strain tensor that is obtained by integration of the rate of deformation gradient with appropriate accounting for large rotations. This measure is used here to evaluate the relative effects of rotational and translational accelerations, in both the sagittal and coronal planes, on the development of strain damage in the brain. A new technique for the computational treatment of the brain-dura interface is suggested and used to alleviate the difficulties in the explicit representation of the cerebrospinal fluid layer existing between the two solid materials.
Technical Paper

Accelerometers Equivalency in Dummy Crash Testing

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has initiated research to develop performance specifications for dummy-based accelerometers in the crash test environment, and to provide criteria for defining and establishing equivalent performance among accelerometers from different manufacturers. These research efforts are within the general guidelines on transducer equivalency outlined in the current revision of the Society of Automotive Engineers recommended practice, Instrumentation for Impact Test, SAE 211/2 March 1995. Representative data from vehicle crash and component level tests have been analyzed to determine the acceleration levels and frequency content in a realistic dynamic environment for dummy-based accelerometers.
Journal Article

Analysis and Mathematical Modeling of Car-Following Behavior of Automated Vehicles for Safety Evaluation

With the emergence of Driving Automation Systems (SAE levels 1-5), the necessity arises for methods of evaluating these systems. However, these systems are much more challenging to evaluate than traditional safety features (SAE level 0). This is because an understanding of the Driving Automation system’s response in all possible scenarios is desired, but prohibitive to comprehensively test. Hence, this paper attempts to evaluate one such system, by modeling its behavior. The model generated parameters not only allow for objective comparison between vehicles, but also provide a more complete understanding of the system. The model can also be used to extrapolate results by simulating other scenarios without the need for conducting more tests. In this paper, low speed automated driving (also known as Traffic Jam Assist (TJA)) is studied. This study focused on the longitudinal behavior of automated vehicles while following a lead vehicle (LV) in traffic jam scenarios.
Technical Paper

Applications of NHTSA's Vehicle Parameter Database

This paper describes the contents, development, and use of the NHTSA's Vehicle Parameter Database in accident data analysis and injury determination. The database also can be used as a source for vehicle information for computer model/simulation programs or in the development of crash avoidance measures. The analyses of damage sustained by vehicles in accidents is based on post-crash information and is somewhat limited since pre-crash measurements are not usually known or readily available. The ability to compare pre-crash and post-crash basic vehicle measurement characteristics provides greater insight into analyzing vehicle damage, degree of intrusion, level of deformation, and injury severity/source. The Vehicle Parameter Database consists of 101 key vehicle dimensions and specifications on more than 2,800 vehicles from 1980 to 1994.
Technical Paper

Brake System Safety Analysis

An important new technique in safety engineering for complex systems is the fault tree analysis method. The results of a motor vehicle brake system safety analysis using the fault tree technique are described. The work is directed toward the identification and ranking of brake system failure modes which may be critical as accident causation factors. Safety criticality for each failure mode is defined as the product of probability of occurrence and severity of effect on vehicle control. Failure data for the brake system components are obtained from maintenance and repair records of a large automobile leasing fleet. An effect scale is developed using a method for pooling expert judgements to obtain the relative ranking of various brake faults as to accident causation potential. The fault tree structure is employed to combine probability and effect to obtain the safety criticality value of each fault.
Technical Paper

Closed Loop Steering System Model for the National Advanced Driving Simulator

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

Computational Analysis of Head Impact Response Under Car Crash Loadings

Computational simulations are conducted for several head impact scenarios using a three dimensional finite element model of the human brain in conjunction with accelerometer data taken from crash test data. Accelerometer data from a 3-2-2-2 nine accelerometer array, located in the test dummy headpart, is processed to extract both rotational and translational velocity components at the headpart center of gravity with respect to inertial coordinates. The resulting generalized six degree-of-freedom description of headpart kinematics includes effects of all head impacts with the interior structure, and is used to characterize the momentum field and inertial loads which would be experienced by soft brain tissue under impact conditions. These kinematic descriptions are then applied to a finite element model of the brain to replicate dynamic loading for actual crash test conditions, and responses pertinent to brain injury are analyzed.
Technical Paper

Design of Temperature Insensitive Ribs for Crash Test Dummies

The Isodamp damping material (also known as Navy Damp) used in the ribs of current crash test dummies provides human-like damping to the thorax under impact. However, the range of temperature over which it can be used is very small. A new rib design using laminates of steel, fiberglass, and commercially available viscoelastic material has been constructed. Load-deflection response and hysteresis of the laminated ribs were compared with corresponding conventional ribs fabricated from steel and Isodamp. Impact tests were conducted on laminated and conventional ribs at 18.5° C, 22.2° C and 26.6° C. Results indicate that the response of the laminated ribs is essentially the same as that of the ribs with Isodamp at 22.2° C, which is the operating temperature of the conventional ribs. The variation in the impact response of the newly developed laminated ribs in the temperature range of 18.5° C to 26.6° C was less than 10%.
Technical Paper

Development and Design of Thor-Lx: The Thor Lower Extremity

A new lower extremity has been developed to be used with Thor, the NHTSA Advanced Frontal Dummy. The new lower extremity, known as Thor-Lx, consists of the femur, tibia, ankle joints, foot, a representation of the Achilles' tendon and the associated flash/skins, it has been designed to improve biomechanical response under axial loading of the femur during knee impacts, axial loading of the tibia, static and dynamic dorsiflexion, static plantarflexion and inversion/aversion. Instrumentation includes a standard Hybrid ill femur load cell, accelerometers, load cells, and rotary potentiometers to capture relevant kinematic and dynamic information from the foot and tibia. The design also allows the Tnor-Lx to be attached to the Hybrid III, either at the hip, or at the knee.
Technical Paper

Development of Brain Injury Criteria (BrIC)

Rotational motion of the head as a mechanism for brain injury was proposed back in the 1940s. Since then a multitude of research studies by various institutions were conducted to confirm/reject this hypothesis. Most of the studies were conducted on animals and concluded that rotational kinematics experienced by the animal's head may cause axonal deformations large enough to induce their functional deficit. Other studies utilized physical and mathematical models of human and animal heads to derive brain injury criteria based on deformation/pressure histories computed from their models.
Technical Paper

Finite Element Modeling of the Side Impact Dummy (SID)

A new numerical model of the side impact dummy (SID) was developed based on the DYNA3D finite element code. The model includes all of the material and structural details of SID that influence its performance in crash testing and can be run on an engineering work station in a reasonable time. This paper describes the development of the finite element model and compares model predictions of acceleration and displacements with measurements made in SID calibration experiments. Preliminary parameter studies with the model show the influence of material properties and design on the measurements made with the SID instrument.
Technical Paper

Improvements in the Simulation of Unrestrained Passengers in Frontal Crashes Using Vehicle Test Data

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

Measurement and Modeling of Tire Forces on a Low Coefficient Surface

There exists a fairly extensive set of tire force measurements performed on dry pavement. But in order to develop a low-coefficient of friction tire model, a set of tire force measurements made on wet pavement is required. Using formulations and parameters obtained on dry roads, and then reducing friction level to that of a wet road is not sufficient to model tire forces in a high fidelity simulation. This paper describes the process of more accurately modeling low coefficient tire forces on the National Advanced Driving Simulator (NADS). It is believed that the tire model improvements will be useful in many types of NADS simulations, including ESC and other advanced vehicle technology studies. In order to produce results that would come from a road surface that would be sufficiently slippery, a set of tires were shaved to 4/32 inches and sent to a tire-testing lab for measurement.
Technical Paper

Methodology for Validating the National Advanced Driving Simulator's Vehicle Dynamics (NADSdyna)

This paper presents an overview of work performed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) Vehicle Research and Test Center (VRTC) to test, validate, and improve the planned National Advanced Driving Simulator's (NADS) vehicle dynamics simulation. This vehicle dynamics simulation, called NADSdyna, was developed by the University of Iowa's Center for Computer-Aided Design (CCAD) NADSdyna is based upon CCAD's general purpose, real-time, multi-body dynamics software, referred to as the Real-Time Recursive Dynamics (RTRD), supplemented by vehicle dynamics specific submodules VRTC has “beta tested” NADSdyna, making certain that the software both works as computer code and that it correctly models vehicle dynamics. This paper gives an overview of VRTC's beta test work with NADSdyna. The paper explains the methodology used by VRTC to validate NADSdyna.
Technical Paper

NHTSA'S crashworthiness modelling activities

NHTSA uses a variety of computer modelling techniques to develop and evaluate test methods and mitigation concepts, and to estimate safety benefits for many of NHTSA's research activities. Computer modeling has been particularly beneficial for estimating safety benefits where often very little data are available. Also modeling allows researchers to augment test data by simulating crashes over a wider range of conditions than would otherwise be feasible. These capabilities are used for a wide range of projects from school bus to frontal, side, and rollover research programs. This paper provides an overview of these activities. NHTSA's most extensive modeling research involves developing finite element and articulated mass models to evaluate a range of vehicles and crash environments. These models are being used to develop a fleet wide systems model for evaluating compatibility issues.
Technical Paper

On the Development of the SIMon Finite Element Head Model

The SIMon (Simulated Injury Monitor) software package is being developed to advance the interpretation of injury mechanisms based on kinematic and kinetic data measured in the advanced anthropomorphic test dummy (AATD) and applying the measured dummy response to the human mathematical models imbedded in SIMon. The human finite element head model (FEHM) within the SIMon environment is presented in this paper. Three-dimensional head kinematic data in the form of either a nine accelerometer array or three linear CG head accelerations combined with three angular velocities serves as an input to the model. Three injury metrics are calculated: Cumulative strain damage measure (CSDM) – a correlate for diffuse axonal injury (DAI); Dilatational damage measure (DDM) – to estimate the potential for contusions; and Relative motion damage measure (RMDM) – a correlate for acute subdural hematoma (ASDH).
Technical Paper

Parameter Determination and Vehicle Dynamics Modeling for The National Advanced Driving Simulator of the 2006 BMW 330i

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

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

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.