Data Collection and Analysis
Perhaps the most important aspect of durability testing is the determination of the proper conditions for testing. MGA is fully equipped to do so, with the ability to record over 100 channels of data including accelerometers, load cells, string pots, other linear transducers, strain gages, pressure transducers, thermocouples, and torque cells. CAN, OBD, GPS and wheel force transducers can also be recorded. MGA has experience with custom instrumentation creating innovative ways to record unique data requests.
THESE UNIQUE DATA REQUESTS HAVE INCLUDED:
- Engine or cab mount load
- Steering and suspension load
- Frame twist and steering angle
Durability related testing is typically considered a time compressed simulation of a lifetime of real-world usage. In most cases, actual data, either in the form of strain or acceleration, is recorded driving on a series of roads that are considered to make up that lifetime. Following the data collection, a number of steps are typically used to go from the field to the lab.
THESE STEPS INCLUDE:
- Confirming the integrity of the data including channel verification and data repeatability.
- Analyzing the data by removing non-damaging segments of each of the events recorded (dead time).
- Further analyzing to determine sequence playback which captures 95% or more of the damaging events, while substantially reducing the in-lab test duration.
- Establishing the sequence playback for the in-lab simulation.
Servo-Hydraulic Simulation Test Equipment
MGA utilizes a wide array of state-of-the-art test equipment to perform servo-hydraulic simulation testing and provide 24/7 services.
This equipment includes:
- Road Load Data Acquisition (RLDA) equipment.
- Latest MTS® controls with FlexTest controllers and RPC® Pro software.
- MTS® and MGA built hydraulic actuators ranging in size from 2.2kip to 135kip of force capacity.
- MAST ranging in size from 4’x6’ to 6’x8’.
- High speed hydraulic actuators utilizing 3-stage valve drivers up to 120in/sec.
- Load cells ranging in size from 50lbf to 200k lbf.
- Large inventory of accelerometers and strain gauges to meet a wide range of test requirements.
- Anechoic chambers for noise evaluations.
- Environmental chambers for durability testing at a wide range of conditions.
- Sun load capabilities.
- Hot gas simulation up to 1000° C.
Commonly Performed Tests
- Real time trailer hitch durability (weight carrying and weight distributing).
- Real time or block cycle durability testing on chassis and suspension components including cradles, control arms, knuckles, suspension links, full suspension assemblies, stabilizer bars, and many more.
- Vibration durability on front end modules, instrument panels (vibe endurance and key life test), exhaust systems, spare tire carriers, seats (ST-0009, Heidedauerlauf, Creaking and Knocking, BSR, Oscillation Durability), and many more.
Servo-Hydraulic Simulation Testing
MGA has been conducting Servo-Hydraulic Simulation and benchmark testing for over 15 years, and in that time, has developed a national reputation for high quality testing services. MGA has conducted numerous multi-axis projects on systems and components including exhaust, chassis, frame, trailer hitches, seating, cooling systems, interiors, and suspension. These durability tests have been conducted for a wide range of OEMs, both foreign and domestic, and their suppliers.
These are broken down into the following types of tests:
- Single or multi-channel fatigue utilizing block cycle or real time data simulation
- Multi-channel frame based real time simulations
- Multi-Axis Simulation Table (MAST) with 6 Degrees of Freedom - MGA operates a total of 25 tables of various sizes across its network of labs
- Dual MAST for chassis and exhaust durability
- Four Post Simulator