Ribbon cutting for the new one Vehicle Safety Center by Audi, inaugurated these days at the IN-Campus in Ingolstadt. The result of an investment of over 100 million euros, the structure uses 250-metre runways, a 100-ton mobile crash block and the possibility of colliding vehicles at an angle of 90 degrees. Destined to become Audi’s most important development center for passive safety, the new Vehicle Safety Center will occupy approximately 100 employees and will cover all current test scenarios.
100 ton mobile impact block
The 100-ton impact block can be moved and rotated, allowing for wide diversification of crash tests. The so-called “flying floor” allows vehicles to be projected sideways against obstacles. Seat belt management systems and airbags are developed even more efficiently thanks to a specific “sled” for controlled impacts, while high-speed cameras and advanced LED lighting systems facilitate the teams’ work. Laboratories for dummies, test benches for individual components, workshops and offices complete the structure.
Over 60 types of mannequins
Over 60 dummies of various types are used in the new test area, ranging from the size of an 18-month-old child to that of an adult weighing over 100 kg. THOR series mannequins exploit up to 150 sensors to collect data during tests, while high-speed cameras minutely record the sequence of events and 3D scans digitally process post-impact deformations. All information is then fed into a back-end system that includes inputs analyzed by experts from other testing laboratories in Europe, Asia and America. Every month, Audi specialists carry out tens of thousands of simulations before creating a prototype. Over 60,000 calculations are carried out for the bodywork design alone, covering 100 different load hypotheses.
“Safety is an absolute priority, and the new Audi Vehicle Safety Center is proof of this commitment – said Oliver Hoffmann, Board Member for Technical Development at AUDI AG – Current models achieve excellent results based on globally valid procedures. We don’t rest on our laurels. In reverse, we continue to improve products and tests“.
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