Automotive Engineering: The Future is Today
- Thursday, 01 March 2012
The components are then joined into a virtual human body, which is extensively validated. Then, using mathematical and analytical tools combined with available data on the properties of human tissues from the medical and engineering literature, researchers are able to determine the effects of a crash – and the pressure of a restraint system – on the body.
Ford has been using conventional crash test dummies for the past 70 years to help enhance occupant protection in its vehicles. Ford uses specially developed dummies for side-impact crashes. The WorldSID and EuroSID 2 models contain more than 220 different sensors to record crash injuries and impact forces.
Learn more about Toyota’s THUMS technology at www.toyota.com/csrc/thums-simulation-of-real-world-crash-eventsp27. Find out more about Ford’s crash test dummies at http://media.ford.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=35625.
Acoustic Mirror “Sees” Sound
When Ford engineers were looking at ways to reduce noise in the Ford Escape, they focused on an elliptical acoustic mirror to reduce wind noise and deliver a quieter interior. The mirror resembles a satellite dish with a microphone. The mirror measures noises on the surface of the vehicle and in the airflow. The mirror identifies “hot spots” where noise penetrates the interior of the vehicle, allowing drivers to listen to music or conversation inside the car instead of external noises.
The engineering team was able to make changes to the Escape shape – specifically, the mirrors and A-pillar -- while in the early clay model phase to test theories and validate expected results. Work was done in the Ford Aeroacoustic Wind Tunnel in Germany. Wind noise performance has been optimized through more than 160 hours of engineering. In a typical eight-hour block, more than 20 configurations can be tested, including glass, mirror sealing, and door sealing.
The science behind acoustic mirrors dates back almost 100 years -- the technology was a precursor to radar.
Learn more at http://media.ford.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=35866.