Computational Design of a Composite Race Car Seat Meeting International Regulation Standards

Johann Sienz, Mariela Luege, Fabian Fuerle


International regulations on the design of racing cars place safety at the top list of the vehicle and vehicle parts design requirements. Numerical simulations is an essential tool for the optimal design of such safety critical car components. The aim of this work is to find the minimal thickness of a fibre reinforced composite structure that can be used in a race car seat subjected to homologation testing. Simulation based product design is used to find a design that passes the three prescribed homologation standards. A finite element model is developed that includes (i) the modelling of the contact between the seat and the loading pads, (ii) the modelling of the bonding between the different parts of the seat, and (iii) the modelling of the effective properties of the composite using the mixture rule. Since the new standards on racing seats prescribe quasi-static tests to ensure controlled load application conditions, a nonlinear-quasi static analysis is performed. Details on the optimal design of the structure, state of deformation and stress of the optimal design are finally given and discussed.

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