Development of a Restraint System for Rear-Facing Car Seats

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Yavuz S., Himmetoglu S.

Machines, vol.11, no.12, pp.1-30, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 11 Issue: 12
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/machines11121076
  • Journal Name: Machines
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.1-30
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


In self-driving vehicles, passengers can set their seats in an unconventional seating position, such as rear-facing. Sitting in such an orientation can increase the risk of whiplash in the head-and-neck system in a frontal impact, as frontal crashes usually have higher severities compared with rear-end crashes. This paper shows that a forward-facing front seat optimised for rear-impact protection needs to be redesigned to be used as a rear-facing seat. In the second and main part of this paper, a restraint system for rear-facing car seats is developed, and frontal impact simulations with 64 km/h of delta-V are used to evaluate its performance. The designed seating system comprises two rigid torso plates, a fixed recliner and an energy absorber under the seat pan. Without using the developed restraint system, the 50th percentile male human model is exposed to neck shear forces exceeding 600 N. With the developed restraint system, neck shear forces are less than 350 N in frontal impacts with 64 km/h of delta-V. Apart from whiplash, the risk of head, chest, lower extremity and lower back injuries are also evaluated. The results confirm that the developed restraint system successfully protects the occupant since all assessment criteria values are lower than the injury assessment reference values.