Project: IHRA/EEVC Research Programme on Compatibility and Frontal and Side Impact Test Procedures

Reference: S096B/VF

Last update: 27/10/2003 12:28:15

Objectives

This project will develop and specify test procedures that could be used to control the performance, and compatibility, of cars in frontal impacts. This will include the test parameters, barrier face, and performance criteria and a cost benefit analysis of legislating for such a test procedure.

The project will also continue to explore the requirements for compatibility in side impacts. The effect of any recommendation for frontal impact, on side impact compatibility will be fully examined, and if necessary a test procedure recommended to control side impact compatibility.

Description

For cars to be compatible in accidents their structural, and energy absorbing elements should interact in such a way that the structures of both vehicles engage and dissipate their share of the impact forces in a controlled and predictable manner and with minimal intrusion of the occupant compartment. This should ensure that drivers and passengers are better protected, effectively improving the crashworthiness of all cars such that they minimise the injuries sustained by the occupants of both vehicles when involved in car-to-car collisions.

Three possible test procedures are being investigated which together could be used to assess and improve compatibility and frontal impact performance:
* a full width deformable barrier test at 56km/h with a load cell array behind the deformable element;
* an offset deformable barrier (ODB) test at 64 km/h with a load cell array behind the deformable element; and
* a second ODB test with a load cell wall at an elevated speed to control the ultimate strength of the passenger compartment.formable element.

Two aspects are being investigated to improve further side impact performance:
* a new and potentially international harmonised side impact test procedure, based on experience in Europe, the US and Australasia; and
* A pole test to evaluate the protection for all body regions against pole impacts based on an investigation and analysis of available accident data.

Contractor(s)

TRL Limited
Crowthorne House, Nine Mile Ride, Wokingham, Berkshire, RG40 3GA
+44 (0)1344 773131

Contract details

Cost to the Department: £2,271,557.00

Actual start date: 18 October 1999

Actual completion date: 31 August 2003

Publication(s)

PR/SE/215/00. Compatibility and frontal and side impact test procedures - Mid point report. Frontal impact
Author: TRL Ltd
Publication date: 01/12/2000
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

PR/SE/189/00. Compatibility and frontal and side impact test procedures - Mid point report overview
Author: TRL Ltd.
Publication date: 01/12/2000
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

PR/SE/252/01. Compatibility and frontal and side impact test procedures - Mid point report. EEVC/IHRA side impact research
Author: TRL Ltd
Publication date: 01/01/2001
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

Paper. Compatibility the essential requirements for cars in frontal impact. International Conference on Vehicle Safety
Author: TRL Ltd
Publication date: 07/06/2000
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

Paper. The essential requirements for compatible cars in frontal collisions. 17th International Technical Conference on the Enhanced Safety of Vehicles
Author: TRL Ltd
Publication date: 04/07/2001
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

PR/SE/617/02. The development of an advanced barrier face supporting IHRA activities - Final report
Author: TRL Ltd
Publication date: 01/08/2003
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

PR/SE/615/02. Compatibility and frontal and side impact test procedures - Final report. Compatibility and frontal impact
Author: TRL Ltd
Publication date: 01/08/2003
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

PR/SE/521/02. A study to improve the crash compatibility between cars in frontal impact - A report to the European Commission
Author: TRL Ltd, BASt, Fiat Auto, UTAC
Publication date: 01/07/2002
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

PR/SE/244/01. Structural compatibility in car impacts: Case studies and cost benefits
Author: TRL Ltd
Publication date: 01/01/2001
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

Paper. Development of test procedures and performance criteria to improve compatibility in car frontal collisions. International Conference on Vehicle Safety
Author: TRL Ltd
Publication date: 28/05/2002
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

Paper. Compatibility for frontal impact collisions between heavy and light cars. 18th International Technical Conference on the Enhanced Safety of Vehicles
Author: TRL Ltd
Publication date: 19/05/2003
Unpublished
Source: Contact steve.gillingham@dft.gsi.gov.uk

Summary of results

  1. This project completed the second stage in the development of a test specification that could be used to control the performance, and compatibility, of cars in frontal impacts. This included the test parameters, barrier face and performance criteria and a cost benefit analysis of legislating for such a test procedure. The test procedures represent the basis of those being evaluated in the collaborative 5th Framework project VC-COMPAT.

    The cost benefit analysis showed that the benefit of improving frontal impact compatibility for car occupant casualties involved in frontal impact collisions is around 10 to 20 times larger than the estimated cost, so the case for improving compatibility is strong.

    The project also developed and evaluated an advanced MDB for side impact testing, which is being taken forward in a collaborative activity with other member states and wider international interests.