Electric car safety the Volvo way

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Volvo Electric Cars

Electric car safety, the Volvo way

pure electric C30 prototype was to the same crash tests as and diesel cars

By Michael on May 14, 2011 12:16 PM

Think and the chances are you think ‘safety’ – the rest of the industry eventually up, Volvo was the pioneer that such crucial innovations as fit seatbelts, side impact and collapsible steering columns.

So the company about to commence of the pure-electric C30 Electric, we travelled to to discover how safety has been into its latest EV.

It’s true, the C30 Electric is on an existing production petrol but designing in safety isn’t as as you might think. The question with the additional weight of and the different characteristics of an electric can electric cars be as safe as cars?

Jan Ivarsson — Manager of Safety Standards at I grabbed Jan Ivarsson, Senior of Safety Standards at Volvo for a chat about the company’s on electric vehicle safety. He was about the thrust of Volvo’s “Battery powered cars have the same safety as other cars.”

And they have the technology. world-class safety centre in is a monument to vehicle safety. It is a research establishment with facilities.

It includes a 600 tonne, 108 long test track can be moved on rails to adjust the of test impact; an 850 tonne block that can be moved to the characteristics of a crash test; and than 100 crash test each costing £150,000. cameras, some capable of frames per second, film the from every conceivable including through a glass underneath the crash area.

On an day, two cars are crashed at the centre. Crash simulations can place at impact speeds of up to 75 mph and may cars, trucks and buses. there is a large car park with the remains of hundreds of that have been in the pursuit of safety.

The complexity of engineering crash into the C30 Electric is daunting. The of gravity, weight distribution and weight of an electric car are very to that of a petrol or diesel Front impact protection is because there is no engine to the impact and spread the load.

has designed a new front crumple to provide that function in its prototype.

Volvo Electric Cars

The C30 Electric weighs around more than the standard The batteries require a lot of space. The car has a electrical system to feed the

How can these be made safe in the of an accident?

“There is no difference, in between protecting batteries and a fuel tank,” says “The difference is the size of the packs, which take up a lot space.”

“Unlike a conventional an electric car does not use the car body as a [the car body is the earth for the Instead, there is a shielded Power cuts out if there is an fault. Power is also cut if the sensor is activated in the airbag

Ivarsson has been very testing the safety of the new C30 Electric. testing started almost two ago. On the day I visited, a C30 Electric had been crashed using a side impact test.

the car was extensively damaged, the occupants in the car have been able to away and the damage did not intrude the passenger cell. It is an impressive of safety.

So back to the original – can electric cars be just as as conventional petrol and diesel In the case of the C30 Electric, it seems certain that the answer is a ‘yes.’

Volvo Electric Cars
Volvo Electric Cars
Volvo Electric Cars
Volvo Electric Cars

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