Auto Manifesto

February 5, 2009

Vehicle Simulation

The future of vehicle emissions testing is going to make use of extensive computer simulation and modeling. Yesterday I attended a National Academy of Sciences meeting on this regarding heavy vehicles. Europe and Japan are both moving forward with simulation and are trying to harmonize simulation platforms (as are companies in the US), from passenger cars to heavy commercial vehicles.

It will advance greatly during the next several years and the effect is going to be twofold. One is that a larger variety of vehicle models and specifications will be available because simulation will enable them to be produced more cost effectively. Secondly, the end user may have to bear more of the environmental compliance burden because vehicle use can be tracked more accurately with more advanced technologies.

Thus not only must the manufacturer produce a product that meets specifications when new, but the end user will be responsible for ensuring the product is used in a way that is consistent with environmental performance over its lifecycle.

Check out PSAT for more info on simulation: http://www.transportation.anl.gov/pdfs/HV/429.pdf

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