Friedman, K., Bui, K., Hutchinson, J., Stephens, M. et al., "Advanced Heavy Truck Frame Design and Opportunities for Fuel System Impact Protection," SAE Technical Paper 2016-01-8049, 2016, doi:10.4271/2016-01-8049.
Frame rail design advances for the heavy truck industry provide numerous opportunities for enhanced protection of fuel storage systems. One aspect of the advanced frame technology now available is the ability to vary the frame rail separation along the length of the truck, as well as the depth of the frame. In this study, the effect of incorporating the fuel storage system within advanced technology tapered frame rails was evaluated using virtual testing under impact conditions. The impact performance was evaluated under a range of horizontal impacts conditions. The performance observed was quantified and then compared with previous testing of baseline diesel tank systems. Fuel storage system impact performance metrics over the range of crash conditions considered were quantified using virtual testing methods. The results obtained from the application of the impact performance evaluation methodology were then described. The results indicated that substantial improvements in fuel storage system impact protection were available utilizing the advanced tapered frame rail technology. Opportunities available with the use of advanced frame technologies were described.