Proposal for a Frontal Impact and Compatibility Assessment Approach Based on the European FIMCAR Project

To improve vehicle safety in frontal collisions, the crash compatibility between the colliding vehicles is crucial. Compatibility aims to improve both the self and partner protection properties of vehicles. Although compatibility has received worldwide attention for many years, no final assessment approach has been defined. Within the Frontal Impact and Compatibility Assessment Research (FIMCAR) project, different frontal impact test procedures (offset deformable barrier [ODB] test as currently used for Economic Commission for Europe [ECE] R94, progressive deformable barrier test as proposed by France for a new ECE regulation, moveable deformable barrier test as discussed worldwide, full-width rigid barrier test as used in Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard [FMVSS] 208, and full-width deformable barrier test) were analyzed regarding their potential for future frontal impact legislation. The research activities focused on car-to-car frontal impact accidents based on accident investigations involving newer cars. Test procedures were developed with both a crash test program and numerical simulations. The proposal from FIMCAR is to use a full-width test procedure with a deformable element and compatibility metrics in combination with the current offset test as a frontal impact assessment approach that also addresses compatibility. By adding a full-width test to the current ODB test it is possible to better address the issues of structural misalignment and injuries resulting from high acceleration accidents as observed in the current fleet. The estimated benefit ranges from a 5 to 12 percent reduction of fatalities and serious injuries resulting from frontal impact accidents. By using a deformable element in the full-width test, the test conditions are more representative of real-world situations with respect to acceleration pulse, restraint system triggering time, and deformation pattern of the front structure. The test results are therefore expected to better represent real-world performance of the tested car. Furthermore, the assessment of the structural alignment is more robust than in the rigid wall test.


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  • Accession Number: 01502576
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Nov 2 2013 3:06PM