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Influence of inner panel structure in overall liftgate performance
ISSN: 0148-7191, e-ISSN: 2688-3627
To be published on April 06, 2021 by SAE International in United States
Event: SAE WCX Digital Summit
Prevailing global industry has set an environment that fosters the search for new procedures, technology and/or knowledge that allows time reduction in vehicle development and, at the same time, to offer the best strength and reliability characteristics to the customers. Constant improvement mindset is applied to those systems that yield the highest interaction with the final user, among those, it is paramount to take notice of systems like the vehicle closures (such as liftgates, hood, doors, etc.). In automotive industry, the majority of the efforts to comply with high standards are often focused to incorporate new materials, which are resistant and lightweight, on the other hand, this project explores the liftgate behavior from a more fundamental standpoint, which is the geometry and how it is related to the requirements that the liftgate should comply with. In this article, a research was conducted to establish which components have a high influence in the structural integrity of the liftgate, taking as a starting point the structural testing assessments that are performed to sign off the closures design during the product development stage. Furthermore, a comparison analysis between different liftgate structures, stand out the geometric design patterns of the interior panel of the liftgate that is present in the hatchback and sport utility vehicles. Finally, this project includes optimization proposals that determined the inner panel geometric form that enables the liftgate to comply with the structural requirements and comparison of the liftgate assessments results between the commonly used profiles across the industry.