Reconstruction Techniques for Energy-Absorbing Guardrail End Terminals

This article examines (1) the identification of the numerous types of energy-absorbing guardrail end terminals and (2) a crash reconstruction technique that is developed for determining the initial velocity of a vehicle impacting a guardrail end terminal based upon conservation of momentum and conservation of energy. Care must, however, be taken when comparing full-scale crash tests, which occur on ideally installed end terminals under optimal conditions, to real-world crashes. The physics concepts of conservation of momentum and conservation of energy were used to develop the crash reconstruction technique. Through increased knowledge of the different types of guardrail terminals and being able to reconstruct real-world crashes, those working in highway planning, designing, and maintenance will have much more data than is currently available to devise better methods of reducing roadside crashes.


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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01013434
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: Dec 10 2005 8:16PM