Materials & Crash testing
An improved understanding of the behaviour of automotive materials at impact speed is driven by the challenges of diverse crash legislation and competition amongst car makers. The strength of a material is dependent on the speed at which it is deformed. In the industry this is called the strain rate effect. The higher the strain rate the higher the strength, but other important mechanical properties e.g. ductility, are also affected.
New advanced high strength steels and aluminium alloys are increasingly attractive in vehicles with demanding crashworthiness requirements, and offer a potential for improved design-packaging efficiency, reduced cost and weight. At the outset of this project no general standards were in place for the high speed testing of materials, their characterisation, modelling and validation for transport applications.
This project is working towards establishing procedures to model and validate material data with strain rate dependency for new and conventional materials. The initial pull for this technology is to minimise risk and cost to introduce new advanced materials into car body structures; to enable innovative car body designs that achieve the maximum NCAP score and compliance to international crash legislation; and to enable greater efficiency in product development by using virtual crash test technology. An important objective for car makers is to achieve product safety certification through virtual testing alone, and this highly desirable goal will have an impact on automotive competitiveness in the UK.
The technical achievements of this project will centre on new data, models, processes, tools and measurement technology. Specifically the technical outcomes will focus on:
In association with ...