Experimental Testing of Vehicles

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A course for community college students and automotive test technicians in the area of vehicle experimental testing. It can be included in an automotive engineering curriculum.

Students will do practical laboratory-based studies on various sensors and data acquisition systems (DAQ), setting up test procedures, wiring up sensors for measurements, conducting experiments, recording experimental data, and analyzing test results. Gaining experience on estimating experimental vehicle characteristics and writing a test report is an important part of the course.

An experimental project based on the testing of a virtual hybrid-electric vehicle with the use of an actual DAQ is included in the course. The lab work and the course project are supplemented by lectures. National Instruments LabVIEW and myRIO, MATLAB/Simulink are in use for laboratory work and course project. The course is designed to meet over a period of 15 weeks, 2 meetings per week, and 1h 30min per meeting.

Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs)

The course learning outcomes are to have students:
1. Understand the role and types of experiments in vehicle engineering
2. Realize the importance of providing safety during experiments and study major safety instruciton
3. Set up test procedures, wire sensors, condusct experiments, obtain and analyze
    experimental data, write a report
4. Gain knowledge on major experimental test characteristics and on estimating
    experimental vehicle characteristics
5. Be familiar with some FMVSS and NHTSA test procedures and SAE standards
    related to the course project
6. Understand calibration procedures
7. Gain sufficient knowledge on test instruments
8. Understand static and dynamic characteristics of signals
9. Gain and apply practical knowledge on DAQ for measuring electrical signals and
    recording experimental data
10. Gain knowledge on strain gauge designs
11. Apply practical skills to conduct experimental studies with strain gauges for
      measuring forces and torques
12. Be familiar with Hall-effect sensors and their vehcile applications
13. Gain and apply skills to conduct experiments with Hall-effect sensors in e-motor control systems
14. Understand principles of sensors to measure wheel normal reactions
15. Gain practical skills to measure wheel normal reactions
16. Understand and conduct unique tests to measure off-set of the wheel normal reaction
17. Gain knowledge of wheel transducers to measure forces and moments at the wheel axis
18. Gain knowledge on acceleration sensors and applications
19. Learn and apply knowledge on e-motor and controller tests
20. Apply knowledge and skills on wheel transducers to measure data and determine
      tire rolling radii in the driven and driving modes of operation
21. Be familiar with a 4x4 vehicle chassis dynamometer and test procedures
22. Set up and conduct experiments on a 4x4 vehicle chassis dynamometer
23. Set up a project on experimental estimaiton of wheel rotational velocity of a
      4x4 hybrid-electric vehicle
This material is based upon work supported by
The National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1400593.
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material
are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of
The National Science Foundation.
Advanced Combustion Engine Technology
Connected and Automated Vehicles
HEV/EV System Technologies (HEV, EV, and Plug-in HEV)
Product Lifecycle:
Post-production: Service, Reuse, and Recycling
Resource Type:
University of Alabama
Author & Title:
Vladimir Vantsevich, Professor
Date Developed:
Monday, October 09, 2017
automotive technicians,engineering,guage,hybrid electric vehicle,vehicle repair,sensors
Education Level:
Undergrad Students (13-14)