Occupant Ejection Trajectories in Rollover Crashes: Full-Scale Testing and Real World Cases


Dr. James R. Funk, Gray Beauchamp, Nathan A. Rose, Stephen J. Fenton, Janine Pierce


SAE World Congress. Warrendale, PA. Society of Automotive Engineers. 2008. SAE # 2008-01-0166


A simple two-dimensional particle model was previously developed to calculate occupant ejection trajectories in rollover crashes. Model parameters were optimized using data from a dolly rollover test of a 1998 Ford Expedition in which five unbelted anthropomorphic test devices (ATDs) were completely ejected. In the present study, the model was further validated against a dolly rollover test of a 2004 Volvo XC90 in which three unbelted ATDs were completely ejected. The findings from the experimental testing were then compared to two real world rollover crashes with occupant ejections that were captured on video. The crashes were reconstructed by analyzing the video footage and aerial images of the crash sites. In both cases, the model was able to accurately match the observed trajectories of the ejected occupants, and the optimized model parameters were similar to the values obtained from the dolly rollover testing. The model was demonstrated to be a robust method for investigating a wide variety of possible ejection scenarios that can occur in rollover crashes.

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