Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A reactive human model increases traffic safety and helps crash test dummies do their job

18.09.2014

Every day, nearly 75 people lose their lives on Europe’s roads. The Austrian VIRTUAL VEHICLE Research Center is developing a new human model for use in simulating accident scenarios.

Research partners in this undertaking are the Graz University of Technology and industrial partners such as Audi, BMW, Daimler, Porsche and Volkswagen. This new model is able to simulate the movement of vehicle occupants more accurately than before, particularly in the moments just before impact, and in the long run will further improve vehicle safety systems. The numerical simulation model provides a virtual representation of the human body with its muscles with special focus on the pre-crash phase.


The crash test dummy now has a virtual partner: The reactive human model.

Photo: VIRTUAL VEHICLE


A vehicle for occupant testing: A system to measure the occupant kinematics is mounted on the vehicle’s roof.

Photo: VIRTUAL VEHICLE

The automotive industry has invested heavily in the development of safety systems. In addition to continual improvements to passive systems such as seatbelts, high-tech seats and airbags, the trend is to work on active systems that recognize danger or on brake assistance. In this manner, the number of fatal traffic accidents could be significantly reduced. Despite these improvements, 75 people die on Europe’s roads per day. That is 75 too many. The European Commission has given itself the target of at least halving the number of fatalities by 2020.

So far, crash tests have typically been employed to test the effectiveness of passive safety systems. To this end dummies equipped with various sensors are subjected to crash tests and injury risks are derived from the measured loads. It is very important to not only examine the crash phase but also the pre-crash phase, because in the few seconds prior to the crash event, humans attempt to prepare themselves for impact with protective movements and muscle activity. This preparation results in the vehicle occupants having a very different position prior to impact compared to a normal situation. This in turn has significant effects on the protective function of safety systems such as airbag etc. Crash test dummies have not been able to take factors such as these into account. Simulations are especially useful in the development of active safety systems. The room for improvement in passive safety systems is practically exhausted.

Numerical Simulation Model for Integrated Safety

The numerical simulation of human kinematics in the pre-crash phase enables the realistic and virtual design of integrative safety systems that can intervene prior to impact. This intervention can significantly reduce the severity of the accident, if not even avoid it completely. Brake assistants, for example, use camera systems to recognize dangerous situations even before the driver becomes aware of them. Exact models that describe human behaviour during brake and steering manoeuvres in emergency situations are crucial in order to be able to develop such new, integrative safety systems.

VIRTUAL VEHICLE has developed the human model in order to recreate such reactive and intuitive movement in numerical simulations. This development enables automotive manufacturers and suppliers to improve their understanding of the kinematics of human vehicle occupants in accident scenarios and to incorporate their findings in the development of safety systems.

The big challenge in this project is to integrate two very different physical areas into a single numerical model. On the one hand, the “gentle” phase before the crash, and on the other the “hard” actual crash event itself with very high loads. A few seconds before impact, the occupants are only subjected to relatively low forces, depending on the frictional attributes of the tyres and the brake system, which permits a wide range of possible human reactions. However, during a crash event, very high accelerations within 100 milliseconds occur, which require optimised interactive cooperation between seatbelt, airbag and the vehicle interior.

Real Tests for Realistic Simulation

New vehicle tests were employed in order to obtain a realistic and representative set of data for the configuration of the simulation model. Instead of simple sled tests, the kinematic behaviour (movement capture) of 60 test subjects was directly determined for various emergency stop, lane change and combined manoeuvres in order to obtain genuinely realistic results. The kinematics of the vehicle, the occupant and the associated muscle activity were accurately measured and recorded.

The reactive human model OM4IS provides important support to the automotive industry for the development and design of integrated safety systems, for example the further development of emergency brake assistants, or the exact adaptation of airbag deployment to certain crash situations.

Currently, the new simulation model is in the further development and test phase together with the partnership for Dummy Technology and Biomechanics, represented by the cooperation platform of German automotive manufacturers Audi, BMW, Daimler, Porsche and Volkswagen. The system can also offer crucial answers to current questions relating to the development of highly automated or autonomous driving systems. How much braking force can be applied in an emergency situation, or how much swerving can be done during an avoidance manoeuvre, without endangering the passengers? The new simulation model is not only a valuable supplement for the simulation and forecast of passenger kinematics before a collision, but can also be a replacement for elaborate and expensive crash tests.

VIRTUAL VEHICLE’s new, reactive human model will play a major role in increasing safety on the roads and is a huge step towards the EU’s ambitious target of halving the number of traffic fatalities by the year 2020. The project, which has been running since March 2009, has recently been nominated for the prestigious business award from the province of Steiermark, the “Austrian Fast Forward Award”.

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.v2c2.at - VIRTUAL VEHICLE Research Center

Elisabeth Pichler | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

More articles from Automotive Engineering:

nachricht When your car knows how you feel
20.12.2017 | FZI Forschungszentrum Informatik am Karlsruher Institut für Technologie

nachricht Did you know how many parts of your car require infrared heat?
23.10.2017 | Heraeus Noblelight GmbH

All articles from Automotive Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Attoseconds break into atomic interior

A newly developed laser technology has enabled physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (jointly run by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics) to generate attosecond bursts of high-energy photons of unprecedented intensity. This has made it possible to observe the interaction of multiple photons in a single such pulse with electrons in the inner orbital shell of an atom.

In order to observe the ultrafast electron motion in the inner shells of atoms with short light pulses, the pulses must not only be ultrashort, but very...

Im Focus: Good vibrations feel the force

A group of researchers led by Andrea Cavalleri at the Max Planck Institute for Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) in Hamburg has demonstrated a new method enabling precise measurements of the interatomic forces that hold crystalline solids together. The paper Probing the Interatomic Potential of Solids by Strong-Field Nonlinear Phononics, published online in Nature, explains how a terahertz-frequency laser pulse can drive very large deformations of the crystal.

By measuring the highly unusual atomic trajectories under extreme electromagnetic transients, the MPSD group could reconstruct how rigid the atomic bonds are...

Im Focus: Developing reliable quantum computers

International research team makes important step on the path to solving certification problems

Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Basque researchers turn light upside down

23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Finnish research group discovers a new immune system regulator

23.02.2018 | Health and Medicine

Attoseconds break into atomic interior

23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>