History of Safety Research and Development on the General Motors Energy-Absorbing Steering System

Paper #:
  • 912890

Published:
  • 1991-10-01
Citation:
Horsch, J., Viano, D., and DeCou, J., "History of Safety Research and Development on the General Motors Energy-Absorbing Steering System," SAE Technical Paper 912890, 1991, https://doi.org/10.4271/912890.
Pages:
46
Abstract:
This paper covers the development of the General Motors Energy Absorbing Steering System beginning with the work of the early crash injury pioneers Hugh DeHaven and Colonel John P. Stapp through developments and introduction of the General Motors energy absorbing steering system in 1966. evaluations of crash performance of the system, and further improvement in protective function of the steering assembly. The contributions of GM Research Laboratories are highlighted, including its safety research program. Safety Car, Invertube, the biomechanic projects at Wayne State University, and the thoracic and abdominal tolerance studies that lead to the development of the Viscous Injury Criterion and self-aligning steering wheel. Also discussed are engineering efforts of the Saginaw Steering Gear and Oldsmobile Divisions. the extensive testing program at the GM Proving Ground, government interactions and regulations, and the field accident reports of the many lives saved by Energy Absorbing Steering Systems.
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