Rear underride crashes, particularly with heavy vehicles, constitute a serious safety concern for passenger cars. Several solutions to this emerging concern have been proposed by responsible agencies. Recent rear-end crashes with heavy vehicles show that a properly used rear underride guard devices can slow down impacting vehicle in a controlled manner. Moreover, with the use of these devices, the severity of crashes can be reduced and loss of lives can be prevented. In this paper, a special underride guard device is designed for heavy vehicle use. The height of the device from ground and support conditions are varied to evaluate and compare the crash performances. Finite element models of these particular designs are constructed and models are impacted by a passenger car model traveling at two different speeds of 48 km/h and 64 km/h. LS-DYNA, a non-linear finite element code capable of analyzing large deformations is used for the analysis. Vehicle decelerations, energy dissipations and passenger car crush characteristics are compared to determine the acceptability of each design. Based on the simulation study, an optimum height from ground and support condition are determined for acceptable impact performance for heavy vehicle mounted rear -end underride guard devices against passenger vehicle impacts.

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