Accelerometers, load cells, force sensors and signal conditioners

At the core of any automotive development program is vehicle and component durability testing. This testing ensures that a vehicle can withstand all major inputs in its intended operating environment. During automotive durability testing, inputs are replicated through a combination of virtual and physical means to evaluate the vehicle's ability to handle extreme temperatures, road conditions, and other environmental factors.

Due to the complexity and harsh nature of automotive durability testing, it is rarely feasible to repeat a complete durability program. With this in mind, PCB's highly reliable accelerometers, load cells, and force sensors are designed to support compressed development time and ensure that systems and components are measured successfully the first time.

Powertrain, chassis, and structural durability testing

Road load tests measure the transient and steady state inputs of a vehicle as it operates over a road surface, accounting for vehicle and driving parameters such as mass, inertia, air and rolling resistance, road characteristics, engine loads, and vehicle speed. Data from road load data acquisition (RLDA) is used to control either a dynamometer to measure powertrain or chassis durability, or multi-axis hydraulic shakers to test structural durability.

Vehicle durability testing can be performed in its entirety, with both powertrain and chassis induced loads, on a test track with a drive profile that replicates the intended road surface and vehicle parameters. While vehicle durability testing on a test track offers the most realistic load cases, it often takes longer to complete than simulated testing and is dependent on current ambient conditions. Simulated powertrain or vehicle structural durability, on the other hand, offers more repeatable test outcomes in an expeditious manner.

Component Durability Testing

Many vehicle systems and components experience complex static, dynamic, and thermal loading conditions when operated. Data gathered from road load or vehicle durability results are used to simulate these load conditions in a lab where forces and ambient temperatures acting on components can be controlled. For controlled component durability testing, where control of the inputs and the response of the test object are crucial, PCB offers robust quartz accelerometers with high sensitivity and excellent resolution that are well-suited for this demanding application. For tests requiring tight control of inputs over large temperature variations, PCB Series 339 low temperature coefficient, triaxial ICP® accelerometers ensure accurate representation.

Miniature piezoelectric accelerometers are required for applications demanding high frequency range, small size, and low weight. Product testing is necessary in today's competitive marketplace in order to optimize designs, reduce defects, and improve customer acceptance and satisfaction. Shock and vibration testing offers a structured approach for verifying survivability in environmental influences that may be encountered during service and for precipitating incipient failures so they are not encountered by the end-user. PCB® accelerometers are used extensively for monitoring an object's response to a programmed vibration input and for controlling the vibration profiles during testing.

Choose PCB for your vehicle and component durability testing needs.

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