Calspan opens 5,500m² crash test center in New York, USA

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The independent test laboratory Calspan in Buffalo, New York, has opened a new crash test center and chose Messring to equip the facility.

The new, fully enclosed and highly secure indoor crash test center has multiple modern crash halls and large photo pits. It features two separate points of impact in a space measuring 5,500m², which means that two different types of crash test can be performed simultaneously. In addition, the two areas are separated so that different manufacturers can test at the same time in total secrecy.

Messring provided the bulk of equipment, following its partnership with Calspan that was announced in September 2017. Messring’s MicroTrack track rail system, propulsion system and photo pit frames enable precise and accurate execution of crash tests.

MicroTrack’s key benefit is that the guide channel or rail is thinner than conventional systems, allowing for the capture of more detailed crash footage from the film pit below. The nearly zero-clearance system between the MicroTrack and the vehicle tow trolley also improves control over test vehicles, including their speed and point of impact. Drive is provided by an electric motor capable of 1600bhp, which is good for a maximum speed at the Buffalo facility of 120km/h.

The facility is designed to accommodate all current test configurations and is already equipped for a host of possible future test scenarios. In its current configuration, up to 500 test runs can be carried out each year. Additional crash tests can be conducted in the existing outdoor facility.

To guarantee security and confidentiality, all laboratory doors are badge-access controlled and monitored 24/7. In addition, the facility’s crash halls and test vehicle preparation areas are separated in order to keep customers and test articles isolated. As a result, vehicles from different manufacturers can be tested at the same time, all while maintaining utmost secrecy.

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Rachel's career in journalism has seen her write for various titles at UKi Media & Events within automotive, tire and marine. Currently editor of ATTI, her favourite aspect of the job is interviewing industry experts, including researchers, scientists, engineers and technicians, and learning more about the groundbreaking technologies and innovations that are shaping the future of transportation.

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