Vaidya, S., Velamakuri, N., Agarwal, P., Pilla, S. et al., "Design and Development of a Composite A-Pillar to Reduce Obstruction Angle in Passenger Cars," SAE Int. J. Passeng. Cars - Mech. Syst. 10(1):150-156, 2017, doi:10.4271/2017-01-0501.
In modern passenger vehicles, A-pillar plays an important role in its passive safety by minimizing the deformation of passenger compartment during the crash. To meet various crash requirements, as well as sometimes due to demand of vehicle styling, A-pillar cross section of modern vehicles is generally wider. This wider cross section acts as an increased obstruction to the field of vision of the driver. It is considered detrimental for the safety of road users. The current work proposes an innovative design solution to reduce the obstruction angle due to an A-pillar. It also addresses the weight reduction objective. This is done by utilizing the noble properties of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymers (CFRP). Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymers (CFRP) offer flexibility for complex design. Due to high specific strength and stiffness, CFRP's are suitable candidate for design considerations presented in this study.Due to the high specific properties, the CFRP's have additional advantages of vehicle light weight body design, which contribute in better fuel efficiency and reduced emissions. The proposed design was analyzed and optimized to meet the stiffness and strength requirements, as well as to further reduce weight of part. The results show good agreement with the stated requirements of reducing the obstruction angle and also aid in the light weight design of the A-pillar.