Center for Injury Research and Prevention

Development of a Small Child Restraint System Virtual Surrogate to Evaluate CRS-to-Vehicle Interaction and Fitment

TitleDevelopment of a Small Child Restraint System Virtual Surrogate to Evaluate CRS-to-Vehicle Interaction and Fitment
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsBelwadi A, Hanna R, Eagle A, Martinez D, Kleinert J, Dahle E
Conference NameSAE 2015 World Congress and Exhibition
Date Published04/2015
Conference LocationDetroit, Michigan
KeywordsChild Restraint Systems, passenger protection, seats and seating

Automotive interior design optimization must balance the design of the vehicle seat and occupant space for safety, comfort and aesthetics with the accommodation of add-on restraint products such as child restraint systems (CRS). It is important to understand the breadth of CRS dimensions so that this balance can be successfully negotiated. Previously this was addressed with the advent of advanced air bag systems, when emphasis was placed on the design and development of surrogate child restraints, which were used, in developing and testing occupant sensing and classification systems. CRS design is constantly changing. In particular, the introduction of side impact protection for CRS as well as emphasis on ease of CRS installation has likely changed key design points of any child restraints. This ever-changing target puts pressure on the vehicle manufacturers to keep their vehicle seats and occupant space compatible. To date, there is no accepted method for quantifying the geometry of child seats such that new designs can be catalogued in a simple, straightforward way. In this project, we propose to quantify the geometry of a selection of CRS currently on the market and develop an easily implementable method to continue to collect this data as new CRS become available. 72 Child Restraint Systems representing 256 seats in the market; infant, convertible, combination, forward facing and boosters were scanned using a novel 3D Laser Scanner and Microsoft Kinect Sensor. The scans were converted into surface models and finite element (FE) models using Hypermesh 11.0 (Altair Inc., MI). The scans were overlapped at angles from literature data to create virtual surrogates. The use of virtual surrogates in the design and development of the rear seat vehicle environment early on in the design-development cycle will facilitate CRS-vehicle fitment.