Optimization of a Cockpit Structure according to ECE-R21 Regulation

Michael Walter, Hartmut Chladek, Dr. Armin Huß Ingenieurbüro Huß und Feickert, Liederbach, Germany For a prototype of the new LANDROVER cockpit, developed by Siemens VDO Automotive, the design of the co-driver airbag area had to be optimized with the help of simulation in order to fulfill the guidelines of ECE-R 21. Furthermore a more limited inhouse-target had to be reached. The actual state of the prototype was illustrated by simulation and the influence of different measures on the crash behavior was examined. Among other things the following modifications were accomplished: • Changing the stiffness of the instrument panel by specific design of the rib structure • Reducing the stiffness of the airbag box and its connections • Partial absorption of the impact energy using foam depositors between instrument panel and airbag unit The influence of different strategic ways to optimize the crash behavior, in respect of head impact will be shown on a simplified cockpit model. Finally, a comparison of the simulation and the testing of the new RANGE ROVER cockpit will be given.