CONSULTING FROM EXPERTS WITH YEARS OF EXPERIENCE

FASTER TOOL RELEASE THROUGH SIMULATION

LOWER PROTOTYPE COSTS THROUGH VIRTUAL PROTOTYPING

 

VALID COMFORT EVALUATION THROUGH PROVEN DUMMIES & TEST BENCHES

WHY ARE COMFORT SIMULATION AND VIRTUAL HUMAN MODELS ESSENTIAL IN MODERN SEAT DEVELOPMENT?


Analysis and optimization of static and dynamic seating comfort have long been dominated by a multitude of physical prototypes and subject tests. However, this subjective evaluation upon the perceived comfort is highly subject-dependent and therefore only of limited value. In order to meet the high demands placed on modern seats in a short development time, it is therefore necessary to introduce processes that are more efficient and more reliable, with objective procedures for evaluating comfort.

The shift toward largely virtual vehicle development is also associated with a late entry into the prototype phase. It is therefore imperative to also evaluate seating comfort during the virtual development phase. Employing simulation is already standard practice for crash tests and NVH analyses, but it is not yet widely used to improve occupant comfort. Yet it makes it possible to improve the development process, speed it up and make it more economical:

• Key parameters for evaluation (e.g. the strain distribution in the foam), which are often difficult or costly to determine by measurement, can be determined much more easily.
• Faults and weak points are identified at an early stage and can be optimized even before expensive prototypes are built.
• The evaluation of perceived comfort is objectified by standardized boundary conditions. The result is a much more reliable and quantifiable impression.
• The tool release can take place much earlier. The time-to-product and the entire development cycle are significantly shortened.
• Numerous variants can be tested and compared quickly and easily, and new seat concepts can be evaluated efficiently. This significantly increases overall performance and optimizes the use of materials.
• Communication between the individual departments is greatly simplified via interfaces.

The interaction between human and seat is very complex. The basis for the successful, virtual optimization of seating comfort is therefore a deep understanding of the interaction between the two factors – referred to as the "occupied seat". Since the vibrating mass of the human body has a major influence on the entire system, measurements and simulations in which the seat is only loaded with a rigid mass can lead to incorrect decisions.

Accordingly, two models are needed – one of the seat itself, and one of the human body. Depending on the intended use, these occupant models exist with different structures and different levels of detail. For crash and comfort evaluations, anatomy-based finite element models are particularly suitable. They enable a realistic loading of the seat. On this basis, many variables important for comfort evaluation can already be reproducibly determined in the virtual development phase.

HOW DOES THE CHANGE IN MOBILITY – E.G. TOWARDS AUTONOMOUS DRIVING – AFFECT THE OPTIMIZATION OF SEATING COMFORT?


Numerous assistance systems mean that the occupant is less and less concerned with actually controlling the vehicle. Autonomous driving thus expands the spectrum of activity in the vehicle interior. Whereas in the past exterior design often played a major role in the purchase decision alongside economic and technical criteria, topics such as driver and occupant comfort, and thus also the seat as the connecting component between man and vehicle, are now coming into focus. They can become a unique selling point and shape a brand.

The changing interior creates a variety of possible seating positions – away from relatively upright to more relaxed postures. In many concept cars, it is also possible to rotate the seat to face one's passengers. There is also a functional extension: In the future, control panels could be attached directly to the seat to enable a simple and comfortable interaction between man and "machine" in all positions. Seats will therefore have to be completely rethought.

Two other key factors characterizing the transformation of mobility are personalization or customizing on the one hand and car-sharing concepts on the other. Tailored solutions according to the needs of the individual are becoming increasingly popular and therefore must be producible in a quick and cost-effective manner. At the same time, so-called shared mobility offerings are gaining ground, especially in cities, which in turn means that a seat must meet the requirements of all types of drivers.

In terms of innovation and responsiveness, digitalization of the development chain is essential. This is because only the use of numerical tools such as CAE and CAD make it possible to run through a large number of variants in a short time and at a low cost, thus achieving a high level of safety and comfort for new seating positions without making it worse for the previous ones.

Please contact us personally

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We will gladly advise you on questions related to (virtual) seat development, seating comfort and virtual human models.

Dipl.-Ing. Jörg Hofmann
Product Manager CASIMIR

+49 931 49708-280
hofmann@woelfel.de
Formular

Dr.-Ing. Georg Enß
Sales

+49 40 524715-262
enss@woelfel.de
Formular

WHAT MAKES US THE RIGHT PARTNER FOR (VIRTUAL) SEAT DEVELOPMENT AND SEATING COMFORT?


The added value of simulation in seat development is undisputed – be it in terms of increasing quality or reducing physical trials. At the same time, however, many companies, large and small, still lack experience. Rapidly changing vehicle models and ever-increasing requirements often make it difficult to get started. We not only provide you with the right tools, but also with experts who have been working on the subject of seating comfort and virtual human models for many years.

Measurement and simulation are our trade: NVH and comfort analyses, H-point simulations and experimental modal analyses are a big part of our daily work. In particular, our strength is our many years of experience in evaluating simulation results. We thus draw the right conclusions and help our customers to drastically shorten product development times, save costs for prototypes and at the same time implement a high level of innovation. We have been further developing our system and software solutions, e.g. CASIMIR/Automotive, for many years in collaboration with various OEMs and seat manufacturers. This has enabled us to achieve a very high level of accuracy and detail, which in turn allows for a very precise analysis and evaluation of seating comfort.

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