Crash test dummy Renault |
Monday, February 25th 2019
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Crash test dummy Renault

News from Moditech Rescue Solutions BV

What else was discussed during the congress at Renault's Techno Center? In this second part, we take a closer look at, among other things, the crash test dummy. Besides this topic, we also discuss new developments at current airbags as they keep evaluating.

More on these topics in this month’s newsletter!


At the congress in Gyancourt, Renault's Accident Analysis Department also spoke about crash tests and the consequent results and developments. The 'crash test' principle is almost 90 years old. The first crash tests took place in 1930, by which time car manufacturing was already in full swing. The Wayne State University in Detroit started collecting data about the effects of crashes and collisions on the human body. At that time, tests were conducted with the bodies of deceased people. Naturally that raised questions.

Developments were necessary and headway was made. After the war, Sierra Sam was brought to life, a doll (crash test dummy) that was initially and mainly used to test ejector seats in aeroplanes. In 1966 and 1972, the VIP-50 and the Hybrid II crash test dummies followed respectively, and were fully focused on the car industry. The latter was the first doll able to store data. The dolls were further developed, contained smarter materials and gained anatomic properties. Now, in 2019, it’s THOR’s turn. This is the most advanced crash test dummy ever. THOR has a more human spine, chest and pelvis. The face also contains a number of sensors that can measure the effects of blows in that area.

Image: Crash test dummy THOR

Renault also carries out tests with THOR, and all of the findings were discussed. For example, it has been shown that older people in particular suffer more damage because of airbags and seat belt pretensioners. That's why Renault is now working on airbags and seat belt pretensioners that are age-linked. The sensors that detect an accident are also being improved, and a calculator will work out how the airbags deploy themselves, so that the impact can be reduced. The same also goes for the seat belt. In the future, in order for these systems to be optimised, the car’s owner will enter their age into the vehicle's memory and the car seat will measure the weight and distance to the steering wheel/dashboard. This data will communicate with the speed/deceleration data and will make the passive safety systems even more effective, but with fewer negative effects.


During the congress, Renault also announced that they will be adding airbags in more areas to increase the safety of the passengers. For example, the central airbag (in the driver’s seat) and the anti-submarining airbag have been added. We know these airbags from the Audi A8, where the central airbags (see newsletter Nov. 2017) have been applied and from the Mercedes-Benz S Class, where an anti-submarining airbag can be found in the back seat.

Image: Mercedes Benz S Class 2017-2019 with an anti-submarining airbag fitted in the rear seats.

The developments won’t stop there. Think of future autonomous driving, whereby the position of the occupants will change, which will result in the current systems not being sufficient (see video).

IMPORTANT! It is virtually impossible for an emergency responder to keep track of all these developments. By following the latest news through our newsletter and practising with the Crash Recovery System emergency responders won’t be caught off guard in a real life situation.


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