Graduate Studies


First Advisor

Dr. Jennifer Schmidt

Date of this Version

Summer 7-25-2019


Fallet, W.G., Schroder, B.D., Faller, R.K., Schmidt, J.D., Stolle, C.S., Bielenberg, R.W., Rosenbaugh, S.K., Development of Structural Components for a New Roadside Safety End Treatment Option, Midwest Roadside Safety Facility, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, Nebraska, July 25, 2019.


Research project performed and evaluated at the Midwest Roadside Safety Facility, in part, with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska in Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Science, Major: Civil Engineering, Under the Supervision of Professor Jennifer D. Schmidt: Lincoln, Nebraska, July 25, 2019

Copyright 2019 Wyatt Fallet


The main structural components were designed for a new low-cost, sacrificial, redirective, and energy-absorbing crash cushion to meet Manual for Assessing Safety Hardware Test Level 3 standards, in partnership with TrafFix Devices, Inc., of San Clemente, California. Intellectual property was to be developed for the energy-absorbing mechanism such that a patent would be obtained in the United States and internationally.

Advisor: Jennifer D. Schmidt

Bolts tearing through thrie-beam side fender panels was selected as the energy dissipation mechanism. To support the thrie-beam side fender panels were the main structural components: the guide rails, discrete baseplates, feet, intermediate diaphragms, and an impact head. These components were designed and evaluated analytically and through numerical simulation for both lateral and longitudinal impacts to satisfy the design criteria. The guide rails were comprised of built-up T-sections that were welded to discrete baseplates anchored to a support pad. Intermediate diaphragms and the front impact head were frames comprised of hollow structural steel members welded together. An aluminum honeycomb nose piece was attached on the upstream face of the impact head.

Dynamic physical component testing was recommended to evaluate the capacity of the main structural components designed and accuracy of the finite element models developed. Furthermore, it was also recommended that the dynamic physical component testing combine the main structural components designed with the tearing thrie-beam side fender panels and the connections required to assemble the crash cushion, to evaluate the system performance in longitudinal and lateral impacts.

Advisor: Jennifer D. Schmidt