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Technical Paper

Artifact vs. Anatomy: Dealing with Conflict of Geometric Modeling Descriptions

In applications ranging from design of customized vehicle interiors to virtual testing of biomedical devices, the processes of modeling, design and analysis involve the simultaneous treatment of artifacts (i.e., parts designed by humans) and anatomical structures. An inherent conflict arises because the geometric descriptions are completely different. Artifact descriptions are typically the output of computer-aided design (CAD) software and consist of a collection of parametric patches that comprise the boundary of the artifact. In stark contrast, the native description of an anatomical structure typically consists of an image stack obtained using a volumetric scanning technology such as computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Current practice for simultaneously dealing with both categories of entities involves working primarily in the world of CAD.
Technical Paper

AutoDSS: A System Level KBE Tool for Vehicle Product Definition

A key to shortening the design cycle is to shorten the initial or conceptual design phase. An enabling technology towards this goal is an architecture called the Design Support System (DSS), which is based on the virtual prototype concept. The DSS combines knowledge with hardware and software into a system that is a model for the design process. It produces a virtual prototype of the design and maintains an intelligent design document, which is automatically updated during the design process. A design domain dependent version for automotive design, known as “Automobile Design Support System” (AutoDSS) was developed in the CADTECH Research Lab at the University of Washington.
Technical Paper

Comparing the Whole Body Vibration Exposures across Three Truck Seats

Whole-body vibration (WBV) is associated with several adverse health and safety outcomes including low-back pain (LBP) and driver fatigue. The objective of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of three commercially-available air-suspension truck seats for reducing truck drivers’ exposures to WBV. Seventeen truck drivers operating over a standardized route were recruited for this study and three commercially-available air suspension seats were evaluated. The predominant, z-axis average weighted vibration (Aw) and Vibration Dose Values (VDV) were calculated and normalized to represent eight hours of truck operation. In addition, the Seat Effective Amplitude Transmissibility (SEAT), the ratio of the seat-measured vibration divided by the floor-measured vibration, was compared across the three seats. One seat had significantly higher on-road WBV exposures whereas there were no differences across seats in off-road WBV exposures.
Technical Paper

Controls Development and Vehicle Refinement for a 99% Showroom Ready Parallel Through the Road Plug-In Hybrid Electric

This paper details the control system development process for the University of Washington (UW) EcoCAR 2 team over the three years of the competition. Particular emphasis is placed upon the control system development and validation process executed during Year 3 of the competition in an effort to meet Vehicle Technical Specifications (VTS) established and refined by the team. The EcoCAR 2 competition challenges 15 universities across North America to reduce the environmental impact of a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu without compromising consumer acceptability. The project takes place over a three year design cycle, where teams select a hybrid architecture and fuel choice before defining a set of VTS goals for the vehicle. These VTS are selected based on the desired static and dynamic performance targets to balance fuel consumption and emissions with consumer acceptability requirements.
Journal Article

Design Tradeoffs: The Social Costs of Vehicle Fire Protection

Rational design for fire safety necessarily includes consideration of risk tradeoffs that tend to reduce one risk but may increase another. Traditional engineering design criteria can be supplemented with important factors that rely on expertise from other disciplines. Engineering analysis may be able to address reduction in fire risk due to the introduction of new technology, but may not address the social costs associated with this new technology. For example, the resultant increase in vehicle cost may prevent some people from purchasing a vehicle (impacting individuals' lives), may reduce the number of vehicles sold (impacting manufacturers), and may reduce taxes collected (impacting the government). This must be weighed against decreased risk of property damage, injury, and fatality due to fire. In this paper, the methods of benefit-cost analysis from economics were applied to make this evaluation.
Technical Paper

Development of a Parallel through the Road Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle

The University of Washington Advanced Vehicle Works team is currently in the process of designing Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) for the EcoCAR2 Challenge. This competition challenges 15 universities across North America to reduce the environmental impact of a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu without compromising consumer acceptability. The architecture chosen by the team to address these goals is a Parallel Through The Road (PTTR) PHEV which provides all electric operation to displace petroleum usage, four wheel drive mode to improve utility performance for consumers, and effective charge-sustaining operation. The PTTR architecture is the lowest cost architecture to provide all of these benefits, and it does so without compromising safety performance of the platform.
Technical Paper

ESS Design Process Overview and Key Outcomes of Year Two of EcoCAR 2: Plugging in to the Future

EcoCAR 2: Plugging in to the Future (EcoCAR) is North America's premier collegiate automotive engineering competition, challenging students with systems-level advanced powertrain design and integration. The three-year Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition (AVTC) series is organized by Argonne National Laboratory, headline sponsored by the U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) and General Motors (GM), and sponsored by more than 30 industry and government leaders. Fifteen university teams from across North America are challenged to reduce the environmental impact of a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu by redesigning the vehicle powertrain without compromising performance, safety, or consumer acceptability. During the three-year program, EcoCAR teams follow a real-world Vehicle Development Process (VDP) modeled after GM's own VDP. The EcoCAR 2 VDP serves as a roadmap for the engineering process of designing, building and refining advanced technology vehicles.
Technical Paper

Exploring the Space of Human Body Shapes: Data-driven Synthesis under Anthropometric Control

In this paper, we demonstrate a system for synthesizing high-resolution, realistic 3D human body shapes according to user-specified anthropometric parameters. We begin with a corpus of whole-body 3D laser range scans of 250 different people. For each scan, we warp a common template mesh to fit each scanned shape, thereby creating a one-to-one vertex correspondence between each of the example body shapes. Once we have a common surface representation for each example, we then use principal component analysis to reduce the data storage requirements. The final step is to relate the variation of body shape with concrete parameters, such as body circumferences, point-to-point measurements, etc. These parameters can then be used as “sliders” to synthesize new individuals with the required attributes, or to edit the attributes of scanned individuals.
Technical Paper

Fatty Acid Compositions of Solvent Extracted Lipids from Two Microalgae

Oil extracted from microalgae has the potential to offset demand for petroleum, if conditions of cost and scale can be met. In this paper, we present the compositional differences of fatty acid methyl esters (FAMEs) obtained by solvent extraction from two different oleaginous microalgae. Oil samples were extracted from a proprietary alga (Alga X) and a more common Nannochloropsis oculata (NC) using the Soxhlet process with n-hexane. The neutral lipids contained in Alga X comprised approximately 40 to 60% of the algal dry weight, and the oil was mostly converted to methyl esters using a transesterification process. On the other hand, NC produced approximately 25% lipids, but the yield of methyl esters was often less than 1% and subject to high variation. FAMEs were analyzed using gas chromatography and the average chain lengths for NC were shown to be greater than the average chain lengths for Alga X.
Technical Paper

High Efficiency Energy Conversion Systems for Liquid Nitrogen Automobiles

This investigation of the use of cryogens as energy storage media for zero emission vehicles has found that using liquid nitrogen to liquefy the working fluids of one or more closed Rankine power cycles can be an effective means for increasing motive power. System configurations are presented which can realize over 50% of the availability of liquid nitrogen without relying on isothermal expanders. A zero emission vehicle utilizing such a propulsion system would have an energy storage reservoir that can be refilled in a matter of minutes and a range comparable to that of a conventional automobile.
Technical Paper

Improving Fuel Economy of Thermostatic Control for a Series Plugin-Hybrid Electric Vehicle Using Driver Prediction

This study investigates using driver prediction to anticipate energy usage over a 160-meter look-ahead distance for a series, plug-in, hybrid-electric vehicle to improve conventional thermostatic powertrain control. Driver prediction algorithms utilize a hidden Markov model to predict route and a regression tree to predict speed over the route. Anticipated energy consumption is calculated by integrating force vectors over the look-ahead distance using the predicted incline slope and vehicle speed. Thermostatic powertrain control is improved by supplementing energy produced by the series generator with regenerative braking during events where anticipated energy consumption is negative, typically associated with declines or decelerations.
Technical Paper

Likelihood of Lumbar Spine Injuries for Far-side Occupants in Low to Moderate Speed Lateral Impacts

Previous studies have shown that occupant kinematics in lateral impacts are different for near- and far-side occupants. Additionally, injuries to far-side occupants in high-speed lateral impacts have been better documented in the scientific literature; few studies have looked at low-speed far-side occupants. The purpose of this study was to determine the risk of lumbar spine injury for restrained and unrestrained far-side occupants in low- to moderate- speed lateral impacts. The NASS/CDS database was queried for far-side occupants in lateral impacts for different levels of impact severity (categorized by Delta-V): 0 to 8 km/h, 8 to 16 km/h, 16 to 24 km/h and 24 to 32 km/h. To further understand the lumbar spine injuries sustained by occupants in real-world impacts, far-side lateral impact tests with ATDs from the NHTSA Biomechanics Test Database were used to estimate lumbar loads in generic far-side sled tests.
Technical Paper

Map Matching with Travel Time Constraints

Map matching determines which road a vehicle is on based on inaccurate measured locations, such as GPS points. Simple algorithms, such as nearest road matching, fail often. We introduce a new algorithm that finds a sequence of road segments which simultaneously match the measured locations and which are traversable in the time intervals associated with the measurements. The time constraint, implemented with a hidden Markov model, greatly reduces the errors made by nearest road matching. We trained and tested the new algorithm on data taken from a large pool of real drivers.
Technical Paper

Parameter Estimation of the Human Ankle in the Transverse Plane during Straight Walking

In order to reduce painful and injurious shear stresses for lower limb amputees, prosthetic ankle joints need to provide torsional control in the transverse plane. This paper attempts to characterize biological ankle function in the transverse plane with simple mechanical elements to assist in the design of a biomimetic prosthetic ankle joint. Motion capture data was collected from ten subjects walking in a straight trajectory to model four states of stance phase. Passive elements were chosen to model the ankle in each state. The ankle was observed to act as a quadratic torsional spring in State 1 and as linear torsional springs in States 2, 3 and 4. The results of this study should assist with the mechanical design and control of a biomimetic torsional prosthesis by suggesting a finite state control system and by providing the stiffness coefficients to be controlled for straight walking.
Technical Paper

Powertrain Integration and Controls Development Process for a Parallel Through the Road Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle

The University of Washington Advanced Vehicle Works team has spent the last two years designing and integrating a Parallel Through The Road (PTTR) PHEV drive system into a stock Chevy Malibu as part of the EcoCAR 2 Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition. This paper presents the integration efforts performed throughout year 2 in an effort to produce a 65% “buyoff ready” prototype vehicle. EcoCAR2 challenges 16 universities across North America to reduce the environmental impact of a 2013 Chevrolet Malibu without compromising consumer acceptability. The architecture chosen by the team to address these goals is a PTTR PHEV which provides all-electric operation to displace petroleum usage, four wheel drive mode to improve utility performance for consumers, and an efficient charge-sustaining mode using 20% biodiesel (B20). The PTTR architecture is the lowest cost architecture to provide all of these benefits, and it does so without compromising the safety or performance of the platform.
Technical Paper

Quasi-Isothermal Expansion Engines for Liquid Nitrogen Automotive Propulsion

An automotive propulsion concept is presented which utilizes liquid nitrogen as the working fluid for an open Rankine cycle. Ambient heat exchangers are used to power an engine that is configured to maximize heat transfer during the expansion stroke. If sufficient heat input during the expansion process can be realized then this cryogenic propulsive system would provide greater automotive ranges and lower operating costs than those of electric vehicles currently being considered for mass production. The feasibility of meeting this engineering challenge has been evaluated and several means of achieving quasi-isothermal expansion are discussed.
Technical Paper

Route Prediction from Trip Observations

This paper develops and tests algorithms for predicting the end-to-end route of a vehicle based on GPS observations of the vehicle's past trips. We show that a large portion a typical driver's trips are repeated. Our algorithms exploit this fact for prediction by matching the first part of a driver's current trip with one of the set of previously observed trips. Rather than predicting upcoming road segments, our focus is on making long term predictions of the route. We evaluate our algorithms using a large corpus of real world GPS driving data acquired from observing over 250 drivers for an average of 15.1 days per subject. Our results show how often and how accurately we can predict a driver's route as a function of the distance already driven.
Technical Paper

Shape Memory Effect of TiNi Short Fiber on Mechanical Properties of TiNi/Al6061 Composite

A composite of an aluminum matrix reinforced by short TiNi shape memory alloy (SMA) fibers was fabricated. The processing and thermomechanical behaviors of the composite TiNi/Al6061 were investigated experimentally and analytically. Optimal hot-pressing conditions of TiNi/Al6061 processing were identified. The shape memory effect (SME) was activated by prestraining the composite at the temperature between Ms and As, followed by heating up to Af. SME on mechanical properties, such as microhardness, yield stresses of the composite, were investigated. A computational model for the strengthening mechanism of the short fiber metal matrix composite was utilized to analyze SME on yield stress of the composite. Yield stress of the composite as a function of prestrain was predicted numerically and verified experimentally.
Technical Paper

Simulation of Advanced Regenerative Braking Strategies in a Series Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle

Regenerative braking is an important factor in improving hybrid electric vehicle efficiency. This paper proposes a new regenerative braking strategy that activates preemptively during a distracted driving scenario, before service brakes are utilized. The strategy uses onboard advanced driver assistance systems, such as forward facing radar, to detect when an object is approaching fast enough to enable regenerative braking in response. The proposed strategy is simulated on a full-vehicle model of a series plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. A driver model is developed to mimic the behavior of a distracted driver through delayed response time to the changing speed of a lead vehicle. Multiple trials are simulated using different combinations of existing regenerative braking strategies along with the proposed strategy. Results show that a preventative regenerative braking control strategy can recuperate significant amounts of energy while also improving vehicle safety.
Technical Paper

Stresswave® Fatigue Life Improvement Process

A new method for improving the fatigue lives of holes in metal structures has been developed. The StressWave® process provides compressive residual stresses and fatigue life improvement factors that are similar to or exceed those produced by legacy mandrel cold working processes. StressWave creates the stresses prior to machining the hole, without any pre- or extra post-processing operations. The process has been applied in a variety of alloys (aluminum, steel, titanium and cast iron) and section thickness (0.8 to 25 mm). Fatigue testing has shown life improvement factors typically five to twenty times greater than untreated open-hole specimens. Residual stress distributions have been measured by neutron diffraction and photo-elastic techniques and compared with FEA analysis to verify process parameters. Crack growth measurements and fractography have revealed the beneficial compressive residual stresses extend fatigue crack growth life.