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Evaluation of Energy Absorbers for Use in a Roadside/Median Barrier

REPORT NUMBER

TRP-03-280-14

AUTHORS

Jennifer Schmidt, Tyler Schmidt, Ronald Faller, Dean Sicking, John Reid, Bob Bielenberg, Scott Rosenbaugh, Jim Holloway

PUBLICATION DATE

2014-02-06

ABSTRACT

Several types of elastomeric energy absorbers were evaluated for use in a Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware (MASH) Test Level 4 (TL-4) energy-absorbing, urban roadside/median barrier. Twelve dynamic bogie tests were conducted on 60- and 80-durometer EPDM rubber cylinders. Five dynamic bogie tests were conducted on marine shear fenders. One dynamic test was conducted on a 27-ft (8.2-m) long installation of 2-in. (51-mm) thick EPDM rubber cylinders spaced at 8 ft (2.4 m) on center and attached to the front face of a 32-in. (813-mm) tall, concrete New Jersey-shaped barrier with a continuous 6-in. x 12-in. (152-mm x 305-mm) steel tubular front rail. One dynamic test was conducted on a 28-ft (8.5-m) long installation of 11⅝ -in. (295-mm) tall marine shear fender posts spaced at 8 ft (2.4 m) on center with a 6¾-in. (171-mm) tall, upper timber rail. Both barrier concepts showed promising results. Several static tests were conducted on the marine shear fenders at hot, cold, and room temperatures to evaluate its effect on energy-absorber behavior.

KEYWORDS

Highway Safety, Crash Test, Roadside Appurtenances, Compliance Test, MASH, Energy-Absorbing Barrier, Elastomers, Rubber, and Restorable

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