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Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Publications Count: 30526


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10011173
The Effectiveness of Synthesizing A-Pillar Structures in Passenger Cars
Abstract:
The Toyota Camry is one of the best-selling cars in America. It is economical, reliable, and most importantly, safe. These attributes allowed the Camry to be the trustworthy choice when choosing dependable vehicle. However, a new finding brought question to the Camry’s safety. Since 1997, the Camry received a “good” rating on its moderate overlap front crash test through the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety. In 2012, the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety introduced a frontal small overlap crash test into the overall evaluation of vehicle occupant safety test. The 2012 Camry received a “poor” rating on this new test, while the 2015 Camry redeemed itself with a “good” rating once again. This study aims to find a possible solution that Toyota implemented to reduce the severity of a frontal small overlap crash in the Camry during a mid-cycle update. The purpose of this study is to analyze and evaluate the performance of various A-pillar shapes as energy absorbing structures in improving passenger safety in a frontal crash. First, A-pillar structures of the 2012 and 2015 Camry were modeled using CAD software, namely SolidWorks. Then, a crash test simulation using ANSYS software, was applied to the A-pillars to analyze the behavior of the structures in similar conditions. Finally, the results were compared to safety values of cabin intrusion to determine the crashworthy behaviors of both A-pillar structures by measuring total deformation. This study highlights that it is possible that Toyota improved the shape of the A-pillar in the 2015 Camry in order to receive a “good” rating from the IIHS safety evaluation once again. These findings can possibly be used to increase safety performance in future vehicles to decrease passenger injury or fatality.

References:

[1] “2012 Toyota Camry Crash Test.” IIHS, Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, 2012, www.iihs.org/ratings/vehicle/Toyota/camry-4-door-sedan/2012.
[2] “2012 Volvo XC60 Crash Safety.” IIHS, Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, 2012, https://www.iihs.org/ratings/vehicle/volvo/xc60-4-door-suv/2012.
[3] “2015 Toyota Camry Crash Safety.” IIHS, Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, 2015, www.iihs.org/ratings/vehicle/Toyota/camry-4-door-sedan/2015.
[4] Aylor, David A.; et al. “How the 64.4 km/h (40 mi/h) Frontal Offset Deformable Crash Test Relates to Real-world Crash Severity.” Proceedings of the Second International Expert Symposium on Accident Research (CD-ROM) September 2006.
[5] Farmer, Charles M. “Relationships of Frontal Offset Crash Test Results to Real-World Driver Fatality Rates.” Traffic Injury Prevention, vol. 6, no. 1, 2005, pp. 31–37., doi:10.1080/15389580590928981.
[6] Larsson, Johnny K. “Laser Development at Volvo.” Industrial Laser Solutions, 1 Mar. 2013, www.industrial-lasers.com/welding/article/16485578/laser-development-at-volvo.
[7] Mueller, Becky C., et al. “Structural Design Strategies for Improved Small Overlap Crashworthiness Performance.” SAE Technical Paper Series, 2014, doi:10.4271/2014-22-0006.
[8] Sherwood, Christopher P., et al. “Development of a Frontal Small Overlap Crashworthiness Evaluation Test.” Traffic Injury Prevention, vol. 14, no. sup1, 2013, doi:10.1080/15389588.2013.790539.
[9] Sherwood, Christopher P.; et al. “Characteristics of Small Overlap Crashes.” Proceedings of the 21st International Technical Conference on the Enhanced Safety of Vehicles (CD-ROM) June 2009.
[10] “Small Overlap Test Protocol.” IIHS, Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, 2017, www.iihs.org/ratings/about-our-tests/test-protocols-and-technical-information.
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