Euro NCAP to Slam Moving Cars Into Moving Barriers, Simulate Head-On Collisions

In the world of car crashes, there’s nothing worse than a head-on collision. Despite the advancements made in technology and extra safety systems fitted on cars, this type of impact will probably never become extinct, and will continue to wreak havoc.
Euro NCAP to simulate head-on collisions 3 photos
Photo: Euro NCAP
Euro NCAP updates crash tests
Current crash tests, although striving to simulate accurate real life conditions, usually do not include head on collisions between two moving elements. Until this year, so was the case with the Euro NCAP, but that is about to change.

The European safety watchdog announced this week that, after using it for 23 years, the regulation-based moderate offset-deformable barrier test would be replaced by the new moving barrier to moving car frontal crash test.

The idea is to see how the car’s occupants are affected during such an impact, but also how the car’s front-end affects injuries in the other car. This is done by using a hardware Euro NCAP calls Mobile Progressive Deformable Barrier, and a new mid-sized male test dummy.

The crash test vehicle is slammed at 50 kph (31 mph) and with 50 percent overlap into a deformable barrier mounted on a trolley, also traveling at 50 kph. Inside the vehicle there are two adult dummies in the front and child dummies are placed in child restraints in the rear seats.

“Several aspects of a car’s safety are assessed in this test. To protect the test car’s occupants, crash forces have to be efficiently directed to parts of the car where the energy can be efficiently and safely absorbed,” the Euro NCAP says in a statement.

“A vehicle which leads to extremely high trolley decelerations or which causes very severe localised deformation is said to exhibit poor ‘compatibility’. In the real world, such vehicles may not absorb their own energy as efficiently as they should and pose a threat to other road-users.”

Euro NCAP will overhaul some other test procedures as well: the severity of the side impact tests will be increased, new scenarios will be added to test emergency braking test, and post crash situation (ease of extrication, electric door handles, etc. and advanced eCall functions) ratings have been overhauled.

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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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