How Does A Car’s Crumple Zone Work? | JMC Equipment

Posted by Juan E. Chavez on 12th Nov 2016

Figuring in a car crash is unfortunate. You may be lucky enough to come out of it unscathed, but your car’s body may not be as lucky. That nasty dent will stay there until you do something about it (if the extent of the damage even allows repairs). For that, you have our body repair tools at JMC Equipment to help you.

Body repair equipment can only go so far, however. If the extent of the damage seems beyond repair, it may feel bad to be a car owner in such a situation. But don’t fret; that massive damage to your car actually saved you and anyone else you might have on board. That’s the dedicated “crumple zone.”

The Crumple Zone At A Glance

Crumple zones are areas in a vehicle designed to absorb energy upon impact. Usually located in front (sometimes in the rear), crumple zones are designed to be crushed in a gradual, predictable way, as an attempt to redistribute the force to keep it from the occupants. Experts call this a “controlled crash,” which absorbs as much of the energy from a crash as possible.

Ever wondered why more solidly built cars aren’t safer? The crumple zone wasn’t introduced until 1953. Before that, early auto designers came up with extremely rigid car bodies that crumpled less during accidents. The problem was that while the car’s frame is really solid, all the force of the crash would be directly transferred to the occupants. This resulted in more fatal injuries. Designers had a dilemma here: do they preserve the car or the passenger/s and driver? They chose the latter – which should be the case.

Newtonian Physics

Isaac Newton says that an object in motion will stay that way unless acted upon by an unbalanced force. This force is usually much stronger than the one the moving object produces. Newton also says that force equals mass multiplied by acceleration. It means that the force of an automobile and its occupants decreases when the vehicle’s required time to stop goes up.

In the case of a crash, the crumple zone aims to lessen the force by keeping two rigid bodies (passenger cabins) from colliding instantly. Deliberate deformation achieves this. Crumple zones essentially give the vehicle more time to stop, minimizing the amount of force that’s transmitted throughout.

We surely hope that you wouldn’t have to figure in such a crash. But should the unfortunate happen to your car, we could help out to a certain extent. Unsightly dents with no real structural damage on the inside, deep scratches, and other types of minor damage—that much, our tools can handle. Contact us today to know more about our services.