Evaluation of structural damage of a small car collision under FMVSS side impact regulations and comparison of injury response when the driver's seat is displaced laterally inward
Safety of the car occupant is given foremost importance by the consumers, federal regulatory agencies, and automobile manufacturers. Many techniques and new technologies are proposed every year and implemented for the enhancements of the safety and crashworthiness of the vehicles. More efforts are still needed to make the cars safer, which in turn reduces the risk of fatal injuries to the occupants. In this study, a typical compact-sized sedan model is analyzed for the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) 214 Moving Deformable Barrier (MDB) and, Side Pole impact collisions, via numerical simulations. In particular, the effect of placement of the driver's seat laterally inward is investigated. A methodology is presented in this thesis to examine the structural damage experienced by the car when it is engaged in side collision with a rigid pole and the MDB barrier, and also to assess the injuries sustained by the driver in both scenarios. In order to delay the contact, a seat position is modified to provide during a side impact with an additional 18mm clearance between the seat and struck door. The National Crash Analysis Center (NCAC)'s Toyota Yaris finite element (FE) model have been utilized in this thesis to analyze the structural side impact responses of this compact sedan. The EuroSID-2re 50th percentile adult male side impact crash test dummy has been as the car occupant. The critical injury parameters of the dummy and the vehicle deformation are evaluated and compared. This study indicates that a small inward lateral displacement of the driver's seat towards the interior of the car can significantly reduce the potential injuries to the occupant. This is due to the fact that most of the energy of impact is absorbed by the vehicle side structure instead of the seat structure and the occupant.
Thesis (M.S.)--Wichita State University, College of Engineering, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering