TRW to Help Automakers Meet the New US NCAP Regulations

Automotive supplier TRW recently announced it is supporting vehicle manufacturers to prepare for more stringent US New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) safety requirements next year. The company has already advanced in enlarging its technology portfolio with the occupant restraint simulation technique, which also offers significant cost reduction compared to classic testing procedures.

"With TRW's simulation capabilities we can evaluate vehicles against the new NCAP requirements; ascertain what changes need to be made to a vehicle to help ensure it complies; and make those changes before we progress to the more traditional dynamic test methods - thereby eliminating one or more phases of development,” Jeff Aird, director, customer account engineering for TRW Occupant Safety Systems, said in a release.

The company also says its seat belt and airbag technologies can help automakers meet new US NCAP requirements for 2011 MY vehicles for varying passenger sizes. TRW has also been working on the development of an active/adaptive venting system which allows for the bag pressure to be varied for both belted and unbelted conditions.

"Safety technology in vehicle manufacturing has come a long way since the US NCAP ratings were first introduced. The new tests will take into account the 5th percentile passenger occupant in addition to the 50th percentile driver: NCAP has really raised the safety bar," Aird added.

The new changes introduced by the US NCAP effective for 2011 model year vehicles include:
  • replacement of test dummy for passenger side and additional injury criteria that covers the four body regions: head, neck, chest and femurs for the frontal crash test modes;
  • the addition of a new side pole test, new test dummies and new method of injury criteria evaluation for the side impact test program, roll-over rating, an overall summary rating;
  • a new program to promote advanced technology solutions and crash avoidance technologies.
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