New Vehicle Development & Testing
During new vehicle development, computer aided designs are leveraged to create CAE models. These virtual simulations are utilized to evaluate designs prior to and many times, in parallel with the testing of physical parts. These simulations include but are not limited to crash events to evaluate the vehicle’s structure and its occupant’s response throughout the crash event. Unfortunately, the limiting factor of this technique is that these models are only as good as the assumptions used to create them. Therefore, these assumptions must be validated through physical testing.
To do this, OEM’s seek out Calspan. Calspan is the only independent lab in the U.S.A. with a highly secure, modern vehicle crash facility and unique assets like high-resolution load cells walls that are ideal for validating CAE crash simulation models. They include a full frontal, offset frontal, side pole and IIHS small overlap. Each wall is comprised of an array of many, five axis load cells. With each, being able to provide three forces (Fx, Fy, Fz) and two moments (My, Mz). Furthermore, Calspan has the latest in ruggedized data acquisition systems, high-speed cameras and a huge fleet of crash test dummies. Assets, which supplement its experienced personnel, and sound processes that consistently yields quality test results.
In addition, Calspan has considerable experience performing vehicle retro-fits and with rebuilding vehicles between tests so that a single asset can be utilized for multiple tests. Furthermore, it’s normal at Calspan to instrument prototype vehicles with 100’s of accelerometers, angular rate sensors, strain gauges, pressure gauges and potentiometers so that its customers get as much data as possible out of every crash test.
Crash Tests on Prototype Vehicles with Various Powertrains:
- Electric Vehicles (EV) including battery electric vehicles (BEVs), hybrid-electric vehicles (HEVs), and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs)
- Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) Vehicles fueled by either gasoline, diesel fuel or compressed natural gas.
Crash Tests on Various Structures
- Components like frame rails, bumpers and front end assemblies
- Unibody on skateboard
- Conventional unibody and body on frame
Learn more about our award-winning crash test laboratory.