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Military Products Case Studies

Pod Trailer

To ensure structural integrity of the trailer, previously defined areas of concern were analyzed by various methods. The areas of concern were isolated through past experience, customer comments and failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA). These selected areas were analyzed through various methods according to their complexity. Simple pin shear and beam bending analyses were performed with manual calculations while more complex frame/joint analyses were performed using CAD models and finite element analysis (FEA).

All results show that the carrier is structurally adequate to for its intended use under expected conditions. The structural adequacy is justified through the application of appropriate safety factors to allowable loads and stresses and comparison with calculated actual loads and stresses.

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Pod Trailer Road Test

General Procedure

  • Perform pre-test visual inspection. Mark all areas of interest with soapstone and document with close-up photographs. This is necessary to identify any pre-existing defects that may initiate a failure, or could be incorrectly identified as signs of failure during the post-test inspection. Inspection should be performed in well-lit area, assisted with high intensity flashlight, and un-aided vision (no magnification). If areas of concern are noted, further inspection should be performed with visual magnification.
  • Load and secure dummy test pod to trailer unit. Be sure that all pins and clamps are engaged and the trailer is suitable for road travel (include light bar and dealer tag and all associated paperwork).
  • Attach accelerometer testing unit to the trailer curb side frame rail between fender and tongue.
  • Hitch trailer to towing vehicle. Photograph trailer and tow vehicle together. Record weather conditions.
  • Open accelerometer logging app (Context Log). To reduce extraneous measurements, do not start logging until vehicle is ready to begin route. Select appropriate test label and tap Start Recording.
  • Three routes will be driven, totaling 122 miles (shown at the end of this document). Approximate travel time is 3.5 hours. Each route will begin at MGS and terminate at MGS. At the conclusion of each route, all connection points on the trailer and test pod securing should be checked. Recording should be stopped on the accelerometer testing unit and current data backed-up to the MGS server via wifi connection. The accelerometer testing unit will then be returned to the trailer and secured for travel to log data for the next route.
  • Upon completion of all routes, the trailer and its components should be checked for abnormal wear, with close attention paid to the interlocking pins and clamps. Unhitch trailer from tow vehicle and perform all upload/download procedures, documenting differences observed from previous operations (written and photographed). Remove test pod from trailer and observe effects on neoprene padding.
  • Perform post-test visual inspection. Mark all areas of interest with soapstone and document with close-up photographs. All weld joints should be inspected, with extra attention paid to the notched frame rail Signs of failure include, but are not limited to: cracks, creases, dents, surface distortions, bends, etc.

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