FORENSIC ENGINEERING AND VISUALIZATION

Dana Thornton

Engineer
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Dana Thornton has investigated and reconstructed accidents involving bicycles, motorcycles, passenger cars, buses and commercial vehicles including articulated truck and trailer combinations. Many of these accidents involved roadside barriers, varying terrain features and post-collision fires. He has also reconstructed many single vehicle, loss-of-control accidents including rollovers.

Mr. Thornton has conducted testing and analysis of motorcycle dynamics, motorcycle acoustics and passenger vehicle dynamics relating to tire tread separation. This testing involved instrumentation of vehicles with the VBOX Data Acquisition System, steering wheel torque and position sensors and accelerometers as well as analysis of the collected data.

Mr. Thornton is a certified Bosch Crash Data Retrieval (CDR) System® Level II technician.

Mr. Thornton has conducted research to quantify the driver steering inputs required to maintain a vehicle in its lane during a tire tread separation event. On this topic, Mr. Thornton has co-authored a publication which was accepted into the Society of Automotive Engineers International Journal of Passenger Cars. As stated by SAE, “Only those outstanding and archival technical papers which either advance the state of the art or insightfully piece together prior research in ways which increase automotive understanding are selected for inclusion in this journal.”

Mr. Thornton has also conducted field testing and analysis to determine: the acoustic profile of various motorcycles, the drag and lateral force associated with asymmetric brake application and the friction properties of tread-separated passenger vehicle tires. Mr. Thornton is currently conducting research to determine the magnitude and duration of crash impulses based on available physical evidence.

Featured Publications:
Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE)
International Journal of Transportation Safety

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