3rd Edition, February 2016

Full Vehicle Structural Durability Evaluation 4/5/6-Post Laboratory Vertical Road Simulation


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Description / Abstract:


Note: Nothing in this standard supercedes applicable laws and regulations. 

Note: In the event of conflict between the English and domestic language, the English language shall take precedence. 

Purpose. The 4/5/6-Post Laboratory Vertical Road Simulation is used to evaluate structural durability performance of various vehicle subsystems using highly repeatable displacement profiles designed to represent proving ground road modules. 

Applicability. This procedure can be used to develop or validate the structural durability of vehicle subsystems sensitive to vertical road input and powertrain torque reactions. Body subsystems where the body is mounted to a frame (e.g., pickup trucks, some vans and utility vehicles) can be validated using the 4/5/6-Post Test. Passenger car body and chassis subsystems and truck frame and chassis subsystems typically cannot be validated with this type of testing alone. This is due to the fact that non-vertical inputs contribute to significant fatigue damage in these types of subsystems. Non-vertical inputs cannot be reproduced on the 4-Post Test. Components sensitive to non-vertical road inputs will not experience an adequate level of correlation. 

The tests referenced in this procedure do not provide a total vehicle durability test. No powertrain or electrical system operation is included. Degradation modes of rotating components such as wheel bearings are not accurately reproduced. Environmental factors such as elevated temperature, humidity and dust are not typically able to be included. Degradation modes related to exposure time are usually not accurately reproduced. 

Additionally, some components are subject to unrealistic wear due to the accelerated nature of the test. Shock absorbers and some elastomers are known to wear prematurely during the test due to excess internal heat generation, which is not dissipated as in normal vehicle operation. Therefore, such components are usually monitored and replaced as necessary during the test. External cooling is usually applied to extend the life of some components during the test.

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