While automakers and truck manufacturers are called upon to increase the levels of safety protection in their vehicles and
reduce the number of injuries that occur in accidents, crash testing of vehicles as a means to optimize vehicle safety design
is becoming increasingly expensive. Use of more sophisticated and more expensive occupant dummies ($120,000 per dummy) can almost
double the current average price of $500,000 per test. In addition, the increasing diversity of automobiles and trucks, as well
as the advent of the next generation of vehicles, such as hybrids, electrics, and fuel cell automobiles, will increase the number
of tests required and add significantly to future crash testing costs.
Role of High-Performance Computing
High-fidelity finite-element modeling of more complex crash scenarios, such as multiple vehicle crashes, run-off-the-road
accidents, rollovers, and pedestrian impacts, are required to develop the mechanisms that can increase the levels of passenger
safety protection within the vehicles and reduce pedestrian injury.
Simulation of a bus rollover test via the LS-DYNA® code (Livermore Software Technology Corporation)
and the finite-element model developed by the Florida A&M University - Florida State University College of Engineering. Using TRACC's high-performance cluster computer,
researchers at USDOT-funded organizations, and TRACC can perform similar simulations using much less computing time.