Date of Defense


First Advisor

Dr. Koorosh Baghshineh


The Whirlpool Technical Center in St. Joseph, Michigan requested that their horizontal inclined impact tester be brought to state-of-the-art. This condition of state-of-the- art was accomplished by first, providing control of the shock pulse generated upon impact, and second by validating the laboratory impacts by comparing them to actual environmental impacts generated in the field. By plotting the magnitude of the shock pulse acceleration versus the impact length, a control plot was developed allowing for desired accelerations to correspond to user adjusted impact lengths. Using actual impact data recorded in the field, the laboratory impacts were plotted along with the environmental impacts. This comparative plot validates the severity of the laboratory impact magnitudes and the shape of the laboratory shock pulse. This shows that the tester was able to simulate the shock pulse shape/loading condition, yet at a more severe magnitude. Further investigation of the field impact data shows that square shock pulse shapes are present. Therefore, a shock absorber capable of generating square pulse shapes was implemented and used to develop control plots for square pulse shapes. Also, research was devoted to understanding how shock pulses are generated and the variety of mechanisms responsible for these pulse generations.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Campus Only