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Simulation of vehicle lateral side impacts with poles to estimate crush and impact speed characteristics

Richardson, S, Grzebieta, R H, Jiang, T, Rechnitzer, G (Peer reviewed)

General

2006

Current techniques used to evaluate and analyse lateral impact speeds of vehicle crashes with poles are based on measuring the deformation crush and using lateral crash stiffness data to estimate the impact speed. However, the stiffness data is based on broad object side impacts rather than pole impacts. The premise is that broad object side impact tests can be used for narrow object impacts; previous authors have identified the fallacy of this premise. Publicly available pole crash test data is evaluated. A range of simulated pole impact tests at various speeds are conducted on validated publicly available Finite Element Vehicle models of a 1991 Ford Taurus, a 1994 Chevrolet C2500 and a 1997 Geo Metro (Suzuki Swift), providing a relationship between impact speed and crush depth. This paper builds on a previous publication (1) and contains additional pole tests and new data based on Finite Element Analyses.