Anthropomorphic Test Devices, HIII 5th Percentile Female Test Dummy; Incorporation by Reference

 
CONTENT
Federal Register, Volume 84 Issue 247 (Thursday, December 26, 2019)
[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 247 (Thursday, December 26, 2019)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 70916-70927]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-27210]
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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
49 CFR Part 572
[Docket No. NHTSA-2019-0023]
RIN 2127-AM13
Anthropomorphic Test Devices, HIII 5th Percentile Female Test
Dummy; Incorporation by Reference
AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA),
Department of Transportation (DOT).
ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).
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SUMMARY: This document proposes to revise the chest jacket and spine
box specifications for the Hybrid III 5th Percentile Female Test Dummy
(HIII-5F) set forth in Part 572, Anthropomorphic Test Devices. The
proposed jacket revisions would resolve discrepancies between the
jacket specifications in Subpart O and jackets available in the field,
and ensure a sufficiently low level of variation between jackets
fabricated by different manufacturers. The spine box revisions would
eliminate a source of signal noise caused by fasteners within the box
that may become loose. This rulemaking responds to a petition for
rulemaking from the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers.
DATES: You should submit your comments early enough to be received not
later than February 24, 2020. Proposed effective date: 45 days
following date of publication of a final rule.
ADDRESSES: You may submit comments to the docket number identified in
the heading of this document by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting
comments.
     Mail: Docket Management Facility, M-30, U.S. Department of
Transportation, West Building, Ground Floor, Rm. W12-140, 1200 New
Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590.
     Hand Delivery or Courier: West Building, Ground Floor,
Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.
Eastern Time, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.
     You may also call the Docket at 202-366-9826.
    Regardless of how you submit your comments, please mention the
docket number of this document.
    Instructions: For detailed instructions on submitting comments and
additional information on the rulemaking process, see the Public
Participation heading of the Supplementary Information section of this
document. Note: All comments received, including any personal
information provided, will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov.
    Privacy Act: Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all
comments received in any of our dockets by the name of the individual
submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf
of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT's
complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on
April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78).
    Confidential Business Information: If you wish to submit any
information under a claim of confidentiality, you should submit three
copies of your complete submission, including the information you claim
to be confidential business information, to the Chief Counsel, NHTSA,
at the address given under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. In
addition, you should submit two copies, from which you have deleted the
claimed confidential business information, to the Docket at the address
given above. When you send a comment containing information claimed to
be confidential business information, you should include a cover letter
setting forth the information specified in our confidential business
information regulation (49 CFR part 512).
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
    For technical issues, you may contact Mr. Peter G. Martin, Office
of Crashworthiness Standards (telephone: 202-366-5668). For legal
issues, you may contact Mr. John Piazza, Office of Chief Counsel
(telephone: 202-366-2992) (fax: 202-366-3820). Address: National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration, U.S. Department of
Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, West Building, Washington,
DC 20590.
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
Table of Contents
I. Executive Summary
II. Chest Jacket
    a. Background
    b. Existing Jackets do not Meet the Current Part 572
Specifications
    c. Development of the SAE J2921 Jacket Specifications (SAE
Jacket)
    d. NHTSA Enforcement Policy To Address Chest Jacket Issues
    e. Proposed Modifications To Adopt the SAE Jacket
    f. Other Issues
    1. Mandrel
    2. Dummy Refurbishment and Tuning of Ribs
III. Spine Box
    a. Background
    b. Proposed Modifications
IV. Testing of the SAE Jacket and Spine Box
    a. Chest Jacket
    1. NHTSA Evaluation
    2. Industry Evaluation
    b. Spine Box
V. Lead Time
VI. Housekeeping Amendments
VII. Regulatory Analyses and Notices
VIII. Public Participation
I. Executive Summary
    This document proposes changes to the Hybrid III 5th percentile
adult female (HIII-5F) anthropomorphic test device (crash test dummy).
The HIII-5F is used in frontal compliance crash tests and air bag
static deployment tests, certification to which is required for certain
vehicles by Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 208,
``Occupant crash protection.'' The dummy is described in 49 CFR part
572 Subpart O.
[[Page 70917]]
    Among other things, Subpart O incorporates by reference several
documents that specify the physical make-up of the dummy. This document
proposes changes to the chest jacket and spine box specifications to
address issues with the fit and availability of the jacket and a noise
artifact from the spine box. Neither change is intended to impose new
requirements on vehicle manufacturers.
Chest Jacket
    The chest jacket is a sleeveless foam-filled vinyl zippered jacket
that represents human flesh, including female breasts. The chest jacket
may need to be replaced because it can shrink or otherwise fall out of
specification or wear out with age. Since the introduction of the HIII-
5F into Part 572 in 2000, none of the jackets that were manufactured
met the jacket specifications specified in Part 572. Since around 2006,
NHTSA, in its own compliance tests, has used the brand of dummy and
jacket (either First Technology Safety Systems (FTSS) or Denton ATD
(Denton)) used by the vehicle manufacturer to certify the vehicle.
However, these FTSS and Denton jackets are no longer being
manufactured; manufacturers (or test laboratories) and NHTSA have, or
will soon, run out of these jackets. In 2013, SAE \1\ published an
information report for the HIII-5F chest jacket, SAE J2921 JAN2013, H-
III5F Chest Jacket Harmonization, describing a new jacket compatible
with FTSS and Denton dummies.
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    \1\ The Society of Automotive Engineers (now SAE International).
SAE is an organization that develops technical standards based on
best practices.
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    This NPRM proposes to adopt the jacket specifications described in
J2921, as well as a few additional specifications. We believe that
chest jackets that have been and are being manufactured to the SAE
J2921 design would also conform to the proposed specifications but seek
comment on whether this is accurate. NHTSA also believes that
additional specifications are necessary to ensure a sufficient level of
uniformity between jackets produced by different manufacturers when
other manufacturers enter the market, and to prevent the variances in
jacket designs that were problematic in the past from reoccurring.
    We recognize that when the proposed jacket is used on an existing
dummy, the dummy may require some amount of re-tuning or refurbishment
to pass the Part 572 Subpart O qualifications tests, but this is
commonplace when worn parts are replaced. NHTSA tentatively concludes
that the proposed jacket specification would assure uniformity in the
form, fit, and function of the HIII-5F. A benefit of this is that the
agency would no longer have to maintain chest jackets of different
designs and take steps to match the compliance test jacket with that
specified by the vehicle manufacturers, thereby providing more
objective test results. We also tentatively conclude that dummies
fitted with chest jackets that satisfy the proposed specifications
would perform equivalently to dummies fitted with the FTSS or Denton
jackets that were previously used. We seek comment on all of these
tentative conclusions.
Spine Box
    The spine box is the dummy's steel backbone. It is located in the
dummy's thorax, which consists of six bands that simulate human ribs.
Since the mid-2000s, industry and NHTSA have been aware of a signal
noise artifact in the signals from the accelerometers in the thorax
during sled and crash tests originating in the spine box. The source of
the noise is fasteners that become loose during normal use. In 2011 SAE
published an information report for a spine box modification (SAE J2915
AUG2011, HIII5F Spine Box Update to Eliminate Noise).
    We propose to adopt the SAE modification, details of which are
specified within engineering drawings provided in the J2915 information
report. The proposed revisions would add plates to the side of the
spine box, with bolts countersunk into the plate to remove any play
from the assembly. The modification does not affect or change the
dummy's performance in any way (other than eliminate the potential for
noise). The improved spine box addresses a shortcoming in the ATD's
design that had to be addressed by end users disassembling the dummy,
re-torqueing the relevant fasteners by hand before each test, and re-
qualifying the dummy as needed. The improved spine box increases the
quality of data and reduces maintenance and testing time.
Lead Time
    NHTSA proposes a 45-day effective date following date of
publication of a final rule to make available ATDs with the new chest
jacket and spine box for use in agency testing. Manufacturers wishing
to test with the proposed jacket and spine box should have no
difficulty obtaining the necessary parts. We believe that the chest
jackets that are currently being manufactured to meet the SAE J2921
specifications would also meet the proposed specifications. We also
believe that the parts to implement the spine box fix are available, as
are newly-manufactured replacement spine boxes that incorporate the
fix.
Petition for Rulemaking
    In 2014, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers (Alliance)
petitioned NHTSA to incorporate the new SAE jacket into Part 572 per
SAE Information Report J2921 and revise the spine box as described in
SAE Information Report J2915.\2\ NHTSA subsequently sent a letter to
the Alliance asking for clarification on several points. The Alliance
responded to NHTSA's request with a supplemental letter dated May 11,
2015.\3\ The contents of this response are discussed in more detail in
subsequent sections of this notice. NHTSA has granted this petition and
today's NPRM commences rulemaking on the issues presented by the
petition.
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    \2\ Letter from Scott Schmidt, Alliance, to NHTSA (Feb. 21,
2014). The Alliance consisted of: BMW Group; Chrysler Group LLC,
Ford Motor Company; General Motors Company; Jaguar Land Rover;
Mazda; Mercedes-Benz USA; Mitsubishi Motors; Porsche; Toyota;
Volkswagen Group of America and Volvo Cars.
    \3\ Letter from Scott Schmidt, Alliance, to NHTSA (May 11,
2015).
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II. Chest Jacket
a. Background
    Today's NPRM proposes changes to the Hybrid III 5th percentile
small female (HIII-5F) test dummy. The HIII-5F was added to Part 572 in
2000.\4\ The HIII-5F is used in frontal compliance crash tests and air
bag static deployment tests, certification to which is required for
certain vehicles by FMVSS No. 208, ``Occupant crash protection.'' The
dummy is described in 49 CFR part 572 Subpart O. This subpart contains
regulatory text describing the qualification procedures and
requirements for the dummy. Subpart O also incorporates several other
documents by reference. Those documents describe the physical make-up
of the dummy, and include a parts list, a set of engineering drawings,
and a document entitled, ``Procedures for Assembly, Disassembly, and
Inspection'' (PADI). These documents can be found in Docket NHTSA-2000-
6940 (available at www.regulations.gov).
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    \4\ 65 FR 10968 (Mar. 1, 2000).
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    The HIII-5F chest jacket is a sleeveless foam-filled vinyl zippered
jacket that represents human flesh, including female breasts. The chest
jacket is zipped onto the dummy and covers the entire thorax, including
the shoulder assembly. It is currently specified in the parts and
drawings document in drawings 880105-355-E, 880105-356, 880105-423, and
880105-
[[Page 70918]]
424, with a call-out to it in drawing 880105-300.
    This NPRM proposes changes to the chest jacket specifications to
address known issues with the shape and availability of the jacket.
b. Existing Jackets Do Not Meet the Current Part 572 Specifications
    The chest jacket, along with the HIII-5F, was developed under the
auspices of SAE.\5\ At the time Subpart O was created in 2000, jackets
were being produced by FTSS. Soon thereafter, Applied Safety
Technologies Corporation, which later became Denton, began to
manufacture HIII-5F dummies and jackets.
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    \5\ The Society of Automotive Engineers (now SAE International).
SAE is an organization that develops technical standards based on
best practices.
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    The jackets FTSS and Denton produced did not conform to all aspects
of the Part 572 specifications; in addition, jackets produced by each
manufacturer also differed from each other. Both Transport Canada and
the Alliance found dimensional differences between the two brands of
jackets. In particular, the breast location differed, and the Denton
jacket was longer.\6\ Transport Canada's research also found that
neither jacket matched the Part 572 specifications, though the Denton
jacket dimensions were generally closer.\7\ For example, the breasts on
the FTSS jacket were lower than in the codified specifications.\8\ Both
Transport Canada and the Alliance concluded that the codified jacket
specifications did not contain sufficient information about the shape
and placement of the breasts to assure uniformity in the production of
jackets between jacket manufacturers.\9\
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    \6\ Letter from the Alliance to NHTSA (Jan. 31, 2006) (Alliance
letter), p. 8; Suzanne Tylko et al., 2006, The Effect of Breast
Anthropometry on the Hybrid III 5th Female Chest Response, Stapp Car
Crash Journal, Vol. 50 (Nov. 2006), p. 390.
    \7\ Tylko et al. 2006, supra, p. 392.
    \8\ Id. at p. 392.
    \9\ Id., Alliance letter, p. 6.
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    The differences between the FTSS and Denton jackets, and between
those jackets and the Part 572 specifications, are the result of a
variety of factors. For one, the Subpart O jacket drawing, which
consists of two sheets, contains errors and ambiguities. The dimensions
for the breast locations are not consistent between the two sheets, and
the overall shape is not consistent, either. These inconsistences and
ambiguities contributed to dimensional differences between the FTSS and
Denton jackets.
    In addition, design choices by FTSS and Denton also contributed to
the discrepancies. When NHTSA added the dummy and jacket to Part 572 in
2000, the engineering drawings for the jacket came from SAE. However,
the jacket specifications did not match the actual jacket that FTSS was
making. During the dummy development period, FTSS made a manufacturing
decision to lower the breasts to change the lay of the shoulder
belt.\10\ FTSS later informed NHTSA that it had also increased the
jacket depth by \1/2\ inch to improve fit.\11\ These changes were not
reflected in the specifications that were ultimately incorporated by
reference in Part 572 in 2000 (8801054-355-E, Rev. D). With respect to
the Denton jacket, discrepancies between it and the Part 572
specifications arose after Subpart O was established, when Denton began
producing dummies and jackets using their own molding processes. The
Denton jacket more closely matched the Subpart O drawing than FTSS's,
but did not conform wholly to it.
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    \10\ 71 FR 45427 (Aug. 9, 2006) (notice of denial of petition
for rulemaking).
    \11\ Letter from FTSS to NHTSA (Aug. 28, 2006) (responding to
NHTSA's notice of denial).
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    In 2003, FTSS submitted a petition for rulemaking to revise the
jacket dimensions to correspond to the dimensions of the jackets then
being produced by FTSS.\12\ NHTSA denied this petition.\13\ The agency
stated that while dummies with the FTSS and Denton jackets performed
somewhat differently than dummies with jackets that conformed with the
Part 572 specifications, the dimensional differences did not have a
significant effect on dummy performance as long as the seat belt was
properly positioned.\14\
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    \12\ Letter from FTSS to NHTSA (dated December 30, 2003).
    \13\ 71 FR 45427 (Aug. 9, 2006).
    \14\ Id. See also letter from FTSS to NHTSA (Aug. 28, 2006).
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    However, studies of the jacket by Transport Canada and the Alliance
in the mid-2000s found that FTSS and Denton dummies performed
differently in the types of testing specified in FMVSS No. 208.\15\
FMVSS No. 208 specifies a variety of different dynamic (crash) and
static (out-of-position) requirements using the HIII-5F.\16\ Transport
Canada's research found that the FTSS and Denton dummies performed
differently with respect to chest deflection in both full-scale rigid
barrier crash tests and in out-of-position testing. It concluded that
the dimensional differences between the FTSS and Denton jackets
``influences belt placement and affects contact with airbag modules
during out-of-position testing . . . these differences confound the
interpretation of chest response and adversely affect the validity of
the test instrument.'' \17\ The Alliance in a 2006 letter to NHTSA
similarly reported research by vehicle manufacturers demonstrating that
``significant variations in chest jacket dimensions between the Denton
and FTSS ATD[s] . . . may produce different test results when evaluated
in the NHTSA-1 & NHTSA-2 Out-of-Position Driver FMVSS 208 Tests.'' \18\
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    \15\ Tylko et al. (Nov. 2006), supra, p. 390; letter from the
Alliance (Jan. 31, 2006), supra, p. 8. See also Tylko et al., 2006,
A Comparison of Hybrid III 5th Female Dummy Chest Responses in
Controlled Sled Trials, SAE Technical Paper Series, 2006-01-0455.
    \16\ See, e.g., S15 (rigid barrier test requirements); S25 (out-
of-position requirements).
    \17\ Tylko et al. 2006, The Effect of Breast Anthropometry on
the Hybrid III 5th Female Chest Response, Stapp Car Crash Journal,
Vol. 50 (Nov. 2006), supra, p. 393.
    \18\ Alliance letter to NHTSA (Jan. 31, 2006), supra, pp. 1, 9.
In 2005 the Alliance presented these issues to NHTSA and documented
them in a 2006 letter.
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c. Development of the SAE J2921 Jacket Specifications (SAE Jacket)
    These differences between the FTSS and Denton jackets led SAE, in
2006, to establish a task force to develop a harmonized jacket (for
ease of reference, referred to in this document as the ``SAE jacket'').
The main goal of the task force was to develop a jacket design such
that both FTSS and Denton could produce a single, interchangeable
jacket compatible with both companies' versions of the HIII-5F. The
task force also developed a device (referred to as a mandrel) to check
jacket fit as the jacket ages (it is known that the jacket shrinks over
time).
    In 2010, FTSS and Denton merged to form Humanetics. Humanetics
continued the jacket harmonization work of its predecessor companies.
However, the merger meant that Humanetics was the only dummy
manufacturer involved with drafting the SAE information report.
Therefore, what began as an effort to specify the design of a
``harmonized'' jacket that could be produced by any manufacturer became
an effort for Humanetics to simply design and produce a jacket that
could fit existing Denton and FTSS dummies as well as newly
manufactured Humanetics dummies.
    During jacket development, Humanetics (under the auspices of SAE)
refined the jacket design to account for various issues. NHTSA testing
of early iterations of the jacket showed that an HIII-5F dummy fitted
with it did not pass the Part 572 Subpart O torso flexion qualification
test. (The results of this testing are discussed below in Section IV.)
Humanetics addressed this issue by tapering the thickness of the
[[Page 70919]]
jacket around the lower circumference where it interacts with the
pelvis flesh.
    SAE published an information report for the jacket in 2013 (SAE
J2921 JAN2013 supra). The SAE jacket is intended to be compatible with
all existing dummy brands (although, as explained later in this
preamble, a dummy might need some tuning or refurbishing to meet
Subpart O qualification requirements with the jacket). The J2921 jacket
is currently offered for sale by Humanetics and JASTI-USA, Inc., the
U.S. affiliate of JASTI Co., LLC, a manufacturer of dummies and test
equipment headquartered in Japan.
d. NHTSA Enforcement Policy To Address Chest Jacket Issues
    Since the introduction of the HIII-5F in 2000, the available
jackets brands (principally from FTSS and Denton) did not match each
other, and neither exactly matched the Part 572 specifications. Such
differences can lead to different compliance test results with
different jackets.
    In 2006, the Alliance requested that NHTSA, in its compliance
testing program, use the same dummy brand (Denton or FTSS) the vehicle
manufacturer used in its certification of a particular make/model.
NHTSA adopted this requested practice by maintaining qualified dummies
(and jackets) from both FTSS and Denton and has tracked which brand was
used in the certification of vehicles the agency tests.
    Recent events render this approach obsolete and necessitate further
action by NHTSA. After the merger of FTSS and Denton, Humanetics
indicated that it would maintain production of the FTSS and Denton
brand versions of the jackets so that they could be used as spare parts
on the existing FTSS and Denton dummies.\19\ However, in 2015
Humanetics discontinued production of the original FTSS and Denton
chest jacket designs. According to its product catalog, Humanetics now
sells only the SAE jacket, identified as part number 880105-355-H.\20\
This is the part number of the engineering drawing of the jacket that
appears in SAE J2921.
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    \19\ The Brand Harmonization of the Hybrid III 5th Small Female
Crash Test Dummy 880105-000, The ATD Harmonization Task Group,
Humanetics Innovative Solutions, Inc., July 2012.
    \20\ Hybrid-III 5th Small Female Dummy, 880105-000-H Brand
Harmonized Parts Catalog, Humanetics Innovative Solutions, Inc.,
August 2018.
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    Over the past few years, NHTSA has received requests from several
vehicle manufacturers for NHTSA to conduct its compliance tests using
the SAE jacket. NHTSA did not agree to these requests, and instead
required manufacturers to identify an FTSS or Denton jacket for NHTSA
to use in its compliance testing. However, because chest jackets shrink
or otherwise fall out of specification or wear out with age, NHTSA's
stock of FTSS and Denton jackets is running out, and NHTSA has only a
limited supply. The Alliance has informed NHTSA that its members are
facing the same issue. Thus, the issues of jacket availability and
which jacket designs are acceptable for use in compliance tests have
become more urgent.
    Today's proposal is intended to resolve these issues by commencing
amending the Part 572 specifications for the jacket to include the
specifications set out in J2921. The proposal also includes a few
specifications we developed that are intended to ensure that jackets
produced by different manufacturers perform equivalently on all dummy
brands. We believe that new jackets currently produced by Humanetics
meet both the specifications in J2921 and the additional
specifications.
e. Proposed Modifications To Adopt the SAE Jacket
    We propose to amend the chest jacket specifications in Subpart O.
The proposed changes reflect the J2921 jacket design in which the
breast contours are blended more gradually into the torso, compared to
the current Subpart O design where the breast contours are more sharply
defined.
    We propose to adopt the specifications in SAE J2921 (Figures 4-6,
which are engineering drawings of the SAE jacket design). However, we
also propose adding additional specifications for the jacket's contour
that are not contained in SAE J2921. Our proposed additional
specifications for the jacket's contour adds breadth, depth, and
circumference dimensions at different section levels of the jacket on
the main assembly drawing of the dummy (880105-000, Rev. J, Sheet 5).
Dimensions are specified for a jacket worn on a dummy, i.e.,
measurements would be recorded on the jacket as worn on a dummy
positioned on the same flat-back bench as what is currently shown on
800105-000, Rev. J, Sheet 5. The additional dimensional specifications
are intended to define the outer shape of the thorax and to preclude
belt routing discrepancies. The information includes additional views
of the chest jacket at various cross sections.
    We tentatively believe these additional specifications are
necessary to ensure a sufficiently low level of variation between
jackets produced by different manufacturers. We note that the jacket
drawing contained within SAE J2921 JAN2013 has less specificity than
the current Subpart O drawing, 880105-355-E, Rev. D. In the final J2921
report, there are no dimensions, reference or otherwise, defining the
breast size or the arm hole size and location. Also, the taper shown in
J2921 (added after the 2011 draft to mitigate binding in the torso
flexion test) is pictorial only, with no dimensions. The SAE report
also does not indicate whether the specifications are for the jacket on
its own or as fitted on a dummy. The agency is concerned that this
overall lack of specificity could result in the production of jackets
of vastly different shapes, but still meeting the drawing
specifications of J2921. As was the case with the old FTSS and Denton
jackets and the current Part 572 specifications, this lack of
specificity could lead to differences in performance between dummies,
which this proposal intends to resolve.
    We also tentatively conclude that the proposed jacket
specifications would encompass existing jackets that have been built to
the SAE J2921 specifications; the proposed specifications were
developed in light of such existing jackets. However, we believe that
the older FTSS or Denton jackets would not conform to the proposed
specifications (for example, the circumference at the different section
levels).
    NHTSA proposes to amend the Subpart O regulatory text to
incorporate by reference new versions of the drawing package, parts
list and PADI. These changes are described in more detail in a separate
document being placed in the docket for this rulemaking.\21\ That
document also includes the engineering drawings identified above.
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    \21\ Engineering Change Proposal, Revision K, Hybrid III 5th
Percentile Female Test Dummy, Part 572, Subpart O, Changes to: Parts
List, Engineering Drawing Package, Procedure for the Assembly,
Disassembly, and Inspection (PADI), Subpart O Regulatory Text,
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, November 2019.
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    To summarize the changes to the new drawing package, the drawings
in which the chest jacket is currently specified (880105-355-E, 880105-
356, 880105-423, and 880105-424) would be replaced with:
 880105-355-H, Rev B, Chest Flesh Assembly, Sheet 1
 880105-355-H, Rev B, Chest Flesh Assembly, Sheet 2
 880105-356-H, Rev C, Sternum Pad
    The Chest Flesh Assembly (880105-355-H, Sheets 1 and 2) and the
Sternum
[[Page 70920]]
Pad (880105-356-H) are derived from the reprints of drawings contained
in SAE J2921 (Jan 2013). We would also revise drawing 800105-000,
Complete Assembly, 5th Female, Rev J, Sheet 5 to add jacket dimensions
at various cross sections, and revise the call-out to the jacket in
drawing 880105-300 to reference the new drawing. We would also make
some corresponding changes to the PADI.
    NHTSA tentatively concludes that the proposed jacket specification
will assure uniformity in the form, fit, and function of the HIII-5F.
Based on testing the agency conducted with the SAE chest jacket (see
section IV below, Testing of the SAE jacket and spine box), NHTSA
tentatively concludes that dummies fitted with jackets built to the
proposed specifications would pass the Subpart O qualification tests
and would not result in different compliance test outcomes. This
applies to both newly manufactured dummies as well as older, existing
dummies fitted with the new jacket. When a new jacket is fitted to an
existing (old) dummy (made by either FTSS and Denton), we believe there
will be no significant change in performance in static out-of-position
air bag deployment tests and in full scale vehicle crash tests,
assuming the Subpart O qualification requirements are met. (Although,
as discussed in the section below, when an existing FTSS or Denton
dummy is fitted with a new jacket, the dummy may need to be re-tuned or
refurbished in order to conform to all Subpart O qualification
requirements. Such retuning or refurbishing is expected when fitting a
new part to an existing dummy generally.)
    We seek comment on the proposed specifications, including the
proposed additional specifications. We seek information and data on
whether existing jackets built to SAE J2921 on existing dummies will
meet the proposed specifications. NHTSA also seeks comment on what (if
any) additional information, such as tolerance specifications, is
needed to fully specify the jacket in order to ensure that jackets
produced by different manufacturers perform equivalently. We also seek
comment on the proposed approach of specifying dimensions for the
jacket as fitted on a dummy, including whether additional Subpart O
qualification tests are necessary.
    We will continue to collect measurement data on newly purchased
jackets to check whether the dimensions and tolerances specified herein
(including those derived from J2921 drawings and the new section
dimensions added by NHTSA) are being met by SAE jackets already in the
field. We will also examine all measurement data provided to us. For
the final rule, we may adjust the dimensions and tolerances to assure
that jackets in the field achieve an acceptable degree of conformity
while still assuring a high level of uniformity.
f. Other Issues
1. Mandrel
    SAE J2921 describes a mandrel to assess the fit of the jacket
(because jackets tend to shrink over time, the mandrel was developed to
assess jacket fit as it ages). There are reference marks on the back,
bottom, and top of the mandrel that serve as indicators that the jacket
has shrunk to the point where a replacement is recommended.
    Use of the mandrel, if implemented in Subpart O, would constitute a
new qualification requirement with a new test procedure. However, J2921
does not provide a test protocol or an objective fit criterion. Also,
while J2921 depicts a drawing of the mandrel, it does not provide
details or dimensions on the shape of the mandrel.
    In its supplemental submission to NHTSA, the Alliance clarified
that it was not requesting that the agency specify use of the mandrel;
instead, the mandrel is an optional inspection device for test labs and
is not intended for inclusion in Subpart O. NHTSA has considered the
need for the mandrel and has tentatively decided not to incorporate the
mandrel or the fit check procedure outlined in J2921. We seek comment
on this.
2. Dummy Refurbishment and Tuning of Ribs
    When a new jacket is introduced, a dummy on which it is installed
may need some amount of refurbishment or tuning in order to pass the
Subpart O qualification tests.
    The degree to which the dummy needs refurbishment may vary.
Refurbishment refers to replacing damaged parts with new parts. Some
individual dummies require more new parts than others to pass the
qualification tests with the SAE jacket. In its testing, NHTSA replaced
parts such as the upper leg flesh, the thorax bib, and the molded
pelvis. NHTSA found that FTSS dummies required more frequent
refurbishment than Denton dummies. In addition, Information Report SAE
J2921 states that when a new jacket is fitted to an older dummy, the
thickness of rib damping material may need to be re-tuned for the dummy
to conform to the Part 572 thorax assembly qualification requirements.
In its supplemental submission, the Alliance describes a procedure for
tuning the ribs by shaving off damping material. The amount of tuning
varies depending on the dummy brand and the specific jacket.
    In its own testing, rather than shaving damping material, NHTSA
simply replaced the ribs (along with other parts) when the agency
retrofitted the J2921 jacket to one of its older dummies. Nonetheless,
under certain conditions, shaving the damping material remains an
option if end-users so desire. Shaving off damping material acts to
lower the force generated in the torso impact qualification test.
Because there is no easy way for end-users to add damping material,
ribs must be replaced if the force is too low. A replacement rib must
have an ample thickness of damping material in order to be shaved.
    The need to refurbish or tune existing dummies to obtain passing
qualification results is not out of the ordinary. To put this in
perspective, whenever a dummy of any type is assembled (not just a
HIII-5F) it must usually be adjusted to some degree in order to conform
to all Part 572 qualification requirements. After repeated use in full
scale vehicle tests, a part may need to be replaced if it has become
worn or damaged. When a new part is introduced (such as the jacket of
the HIII-5F), replacement of other parts is sometimes needed so that
the dummy can pass all qualification requirements.
III. Spine Box
a. Background
    The spine box of the HIII-5F is the dummy's steel backbone. It is
located in the dummy's thorax, which consists of six bands that
simulate human ribs. The bands are made of spring steel, and a thick
layer of graphite is bonded to each band to provide damping when the
bands are deflected, thus giving them humanlike properties. On the
posterior aspect of the thorax, the bands are affixed to the spine box.
The spine box is currently specified in the parts and drawings document
in drawings 880105-1000, and SA572-S28 with call-outs in 880105-300 and
the PADI (pg. 21).
    In the mid-2000s, the SAE Task Force began an effort--in parallel
with its efforts on the chest jacket--to find and eliminate a source of
signal noise that sometimes emanated from the HIII-5F spine box.
Alliance members determined that the noise was caused by loosening of
six socket head cap screws attaching the spine box to the lower spine.
Due to a design shortcoming, repeated crash testing loosened the
[[Page 70921]]
screws so that they rattled against the inner walls of the through
holes. This led to artifacts in the signals of the accelerometers in
the thorax during sled and crash tests. The problem affected FTSS and
Denton units alike. Testing laboratories have been addressing this
problem by disassembling the dummy and inspecting and tightening the
screws routinely.
    As a long-term solution, SAE developed an alteration to improve the
spine box. Specifically, it recommended adding plates to the side of
the spine box, with bolts countersunk into the plate to remove any play
from the assembly. The alteration prevents the screws from loosening
and eliminates the signal noise. NHTSA and others tested the new spine
box fix as it was being developed. (This research is discussed below.)
In 2011 SAE published an information report for the spine box
modification (SAE J2915 AUG2011, supra).
b. Proposed Modifications
    We propose to change the spine box specifications to permanently
fix the signal noise problem. The new versions of the drawing package,
parts list and PADI proposed for incorporation by reference include the
SAE J2915 specifications for the improved spine box. The proposed
revisions would add plates to the side of the spine box, with bolts
countersunk into the plate to remove any play from the assembly. We
propose to replace the current spine box drawings with the following:
 880105-1045, Rev C, Hybrid III 5th Female Thoracic Spine
Upgrade, Sheets 1-3.
 880105-1047, HIII-5F Plate, Thoracic Spine Upgrade
 SID-070-6, Rev B, DOT-SID, Modified 5/16-18x5/8'' SHCS
    All three drawings are derived from the reprints of drawings
contained within SAE J2915 (Jan 2011). We discuss the changes in detail
in the document docketed for this NPRM, supra.\22\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \22\ Engineering Change Proposal, Revision K, Hybrid III 5th
Percentile Female Test Dummy, Part 572, Subpart O, Changes to: Parts
List, Engineering Drawing Package, Procedure for the Assembly,
Disassembly, and Inspection (PADI), Subpart O Regulatory Text,
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, November 2019.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The modification would increase the quality of data and reduce
maintenance and testing time. The modification does not affect or
change the dummy's performance in any way (other than eliminate the
potential for noise).\23\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \23\ We note that the current Subpart O ATD can be a valid test
dummy without installing the new spine box, i.e., users can address
the signal noise problem by disassembling the dummy and inspecting
and tightening the screws by hand on a routine basis. However, NHTSA
believes that these efforts must be taken regularly to ensure that
the ATD's thoracic data are not affected by the spine box signal
noise, and that test evaluators should carefully review test data
for signs of artifacts in the signals of the thorax accelerometers.
As an alternative to checking bolt tightness on existing units or
replacing the entire spine box, end-users, at their discretion, may
opt to modify (rather than replace) their dummy's spine box as
prescribed by SAE J2915. However, NHTSA's proposal does not include
specifications for the modification.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
IV. Testing of the SAE Jacket and Spine Box
    NHTSA and others tested the SAE jacket and spine box to assess ATD
performance with the new components. NHTSA's evaluation of the jacket
and spine box was presented at the 2011 ESV Conference and in a 2011
paper. The agency conducted several types of tests using HIII-5F
dummies retrofitted with jackets built to the then-most current version
of the SAE specifications being developed (SAE J2921 was still in draft
status); one jacket was made by FTSS, and one was made by Denton).
Industry also evaluated the jacket and spine box. The results of this
research are briefly summarized below.
a. Chest Jacket
1. NHTSA Evaluation
    In 2011 NHTSA published a study that evaluated preliminary versions
of the SAE jacket produced by FTSS and Denton.\24\ It compared the
dimensions of the jackets and evaluated the performance of dummies
fitted with the jackets in sled tests, out-of-position tests, and some
of the Subpart O qualification tests. It found that dummies fitted with
jackets built to the SAE design under development performed essentially
the same as dummies fitted with pre-existing FTSS and Denton (non-SAE)
jackets with respect to dummy injury metrics and other responses (with
one exception).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \24\ McFadden J.D., Striklin J.L. (2011), Evaluation of the
Hybrid III 5th female modified chest jacket and spine box, Paper No.
11-0334, 2011 ESV Conference.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The study found that the two brands of preliminary SAE jackets were
identical in appearance (with some slight variations) and compared well
to a draft version of the SAE drawings.
    Qualification tests prescribed in Subpart O, including those most
likely to be influenced by the jacket (the thorax impact test and the
quasi-static torso flexion test) were also carried out. All of those
Subpart O qualification requirements were met for all dummy
configurations with one exception: When either an FTSS dummy or a
Denton dummy was fitted with the SAE jacket, the dummy did not meet the
pull force requirement for the torso flexion test. During the flexion
test, the jacket tended to bind at the waist when the dummies were
pitched forward into the 45-degree test position. The added resistance
due to the binding caused the pull force to exceed the specified limit
of 390 N. The study concluded that further work on the jacket was
needed to address the torso flexion test results. The SAE jacket was
subsequently redesigned to address this.
    NHTSA also conducted sled tests similar in severity to a frontal
rigid barrier crash test (35 mph, peak acceleration of 28 Gs) and
static, low-risk out-of-position air bag deployments. NHTSA found that
dummies fitted with the jackets built to the SAE design under
development performed essentially the same as dummies fitted with pre-
existing FTSS and Denton jackets with respect to dummy injury metrics
and other responses, including those most likely to be affected by the
chest jacket (chest deflection and acceleration).
    When SAE finalized the jacket design and issued SAE J2921 in 2013,
NHTSA purchased new jackets (from Humanetics and JASTI-USA) to ensure
they would fit properly on the agency's existing FTSS and Denton HIII-
5F dummies, and that ``passing'' results could be obtained in the torso
flexion and thorax impact qualification tests. In all instances, the
agency was able to demonstrate passing results for both these
qualification tests (some dummy refurbishment was needed to pass the
test, but as noted above, refurbishment of an ATD when a new part is
fitted is a common operating procedure). See Table 2.
[[Page 70922]]
                                                                           Table 2--NHTSA Torso Flexion Tests, 2013-14
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                                             Return angle   Max force
                                              Dummy                                                                               Initial     difference,    @45 deg      Rotation
                Dummy mfg                   serial No.             Jacket                Trial              Test site           angle (deg)  final--init.   during 10    rate (deg/   Test date
                                                                                                                                                 (deg)       sec (N)        sec)
                                                                                                                                  [1 to 20]    [-8 to +8]      [320 to      [0.5 to
                                                                                                                                                                  390]         1.5]
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
FTSS refurb..............................         F416  HIS DM9396                              1  VRTC                                15.4           3.6          331         1.03    5/28/2013
                                                                                                2  VRTC                                15.3           3.8          325         0.98    5/28/2013
                                                                                                3  VRTC                                16.4           2.7          352         0.96    5/28/2013
FTSS refurb..............................         F416  HIS DM9432                              1  VRTC                                15.3           3.8          324         0.97    5/28/2013
                                                                                                2  VRTC                                16.1           3.1          345         0.95    5/28/2013
                                                                                                3  VRTC                                15.8           3.4          346         0.98    5/28/2013
FTSS refurb..............................         F416  JASTI 129                               1  VRTC                                14.7           4.5          363         0.97    5/28/2013
                                                                                                2  VRTC                                15.2           4.2          355         0.94    5/28/2013
                                                                                                3  VRTC                                15.5           4.1          355         0.99    5/29/2013
FTSS refurb..............................         F515  JASTI 129                               1  TRC                                 16.3           2.8          326         0.94     5/6/2014
                                                                                                2  TRC                                 16.4           3.0          324         0.96     5/6/2014
                                                                                                3  TRC                                 16.4           3.6          343         0.91     5/6/2014
FTSS refurb..............................         F515  HIS DM9369                              1  TRC                                 15.6           4.1          389         0.91     5/6/2014
                                                                                                2  TRC                                 15.8           4.1          352         0.92     5/7/2014
                                                                                                3  TRC                                 15.9           3.9          337         0.88     5/7/2014
Denton refurb............................         D137  HIS DM9432                              1  TRC                                 13.7           3.5          374         1.04    7/15/2014
                                                                                                2  TRC                                 14.1           3.5          377         1.02    7/15/2014
                                                                                                3  TRC                                 14.0           3.6          367         1.01    7/15/2014
Denton refurb............................         D137  JASTI 129                               1  TRC                                 12.7           5.1          360         0.87    7/16/2014
                                                                                                2  TRC                                 13.3           4.5          359         0.94    7/17/2014
                                                                                                3  TRC                                 14.2           3.9          353         0.96    7/18/2014
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Note: Jackets reflect the design described in the final version of SAE J2921 (2013).
    In summary, these tests demonstrated that old dummies (FTSS and
Denton versions) that were fitted with the SAE jacket would pass the
Subpart O qualification requirements. Once an older dummy was
retrofitted with a new J2921 jacket, all parts on the dummy conformed
dimensionally to the proposed Subpart O engineering drawings.
    NHTSA did not perform re-tests of the sled and out-of-position test
series performed for the 2011 study with the final version of the SAE
jacket. The final revision only reduced the length of the sternal pad
and tapered the lower portion of the jacket. These changes affect the
dummy response in extreme thorax flexion as seen in the torso flexion
qualification test. Because this condition was not manifested in either
the sled or out-of-position test series, NHTSA believes the effects of
the taper and shorter sternal pad would have been negligible.
Nonetheless, NHTSA believes that the revisions to the jacket design
were necessary; when extreme flexion does occur, the torso response
must be preserved.
2. Industry Evaluation
    The Alliance's supplement to its rulemaking petition and SAE J2921
also indicate that the SAE jacket performs equivalently to the Denton
and FTSS jackets.
    The SAE report shows that the SAE jacket has not affected thorax
biofidelity. It shows that the force vs. deflection plots for the 6.7
m/s thorax impact tests with the SAE jackets were within the
biofidelity corridors that served as design targets for the original
dummy design. The plots demonstrate that the SAE jacket has not
affected dummy response.
    The Alliance submitted information in its supplemental letter
demonstrating that the SAE jacket can pass the Subpart O thorax impact
tests. However, we note that both the Alliance and SAE J2921 indicate
that the thickness of rib damping material may need to be adjusted for
the dummy to conform to the Part 572 qualification requirement for the
thorax assembly when a new SAE jacket is placed on an old dummy. The
Alliance, in its supplemental submission, clarified how and why this
adjustment is made. Due to high batch-to-batch variability of the rib
damping material, the dynamic performance of the rib is specified and
not the thickness. New ribs are shipped with the expectation that some
tuning (shaving down some rib damping material) is required to bring
the dummy into acceptable performance corridors depending upon the
chest jacket used. The interchangeability varies with the brand and
dummy condition, so adjustments may be necessary when switching
jackets.
    The testing also indicated that the final version of the SAE jacket
could pass the Subpart O torso flexion test. Testing by both SAE and
Alliance members found, as did NHTSA, that the first iteration of the
SAE jacket (made in 2011) registered high pull forces in the torso
flexion test. Testing of the final version of the jacket showed,
however, that it was able to pass the torso flexion test. Both SAE
J2921 and the Alliance's supplemental submission indicate that when a
new SAE jacket is fitted to an older dummy, some refurbishment of the
dummy may be needed in order for it and the new jacket to perform
properly.
b. Spine Box
    NHTSA's 2011 study showed that the spine modification had
completely eliminated the noise emanating from the chest without
affecting the response of the dummy in any other way. The study found
that the spine boxes manufactured by different manufacturers were
identical, suggesting that the spine box alterations are sufficiently
specified. The study also concluded that the spine box was durable.
    Testing undertaken for the SAE task force and reported in SAE J2915
also showed that the new spine box had equivalent performance to the
existing spine box and did not loosen over repeated testing.
V. Lead Time
    NHTSA proposes to make the changes effective 45 days after
publication of a final rule. This means that Subpart O--the
specifications for the chest jacket and spine box--will be changed on
that date. FMVSS No. 208 specifies that NHTSA is to use the Subpart O
dummy in its compliance tests. Thus, starting on the effective date of
the final rule, under FMVSS No. 208 the HIII 5th percentile adult
female dummy would be used
[[Page 70923]]
with the new SAE jacket and spine box in NHTSA's tests.\25\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \25\ In its February 21, 2014 petition, the Alliance recommended
that compliance with the new specifications should be optional for a
period of five years. NHTSA seeks comment on whether this is still
necessary or appropriate.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    NHTSA believes the 45-day lead time would be sufficient because we
do not believe that testing under FMVSS No. 208 would be significantly
affected by the final rule. Vehicle manufacturers already use the SAE
jacket on the ATD. Moreover, because none of the dummy jackets that are
currently in use correspond to the existing Subpart O specifications,
there should be no issue with taking an existing dummy out of
conformity with the implementation of this rule. We also believe that
jackets built to SAE J2921 that are currently used in the field would
conform to the proposed specifications. The improved spine box is not
expected to affect dummy performance because the revision only acts to
remove the unwanted artifact of loose bolts rattling.
    Manufacturers wishing to test with the proposed jacket and spine
box should have no difficulty obtaining the necessary parts. NHTSA
asked the Alliance to assess the cost and availability of obtaining the
parts associated with the proposed changes. In its supplemental letter,
the Alliance indicated that all parts associated with the proposed
jacket and spine box changes are available, and there should not be any
difficulties meeting anticipated demand.
    We also tentatively conclude that a shortened lead time is
desirable because the proposed changes are beneficial for testing
laboratories. We believe that the proposed jacket and spine box changes
would likely lead to diminished laboratory technician workload. A
common jacket design would eliminate the need to deal with multiple
jacket versions. The new spine box would also lighten laboratory
workload by eliminating the need to re-torque the bolts between tests.
With respect to levels of effort and technician training needed to
modify and maintain the new jacket and spine box, the Alliance
indicated in its supplemental letter that both modifications are well
within the technical competency of existing laboratory technicians. It
also stated that the introduction of the new parts will not create any
significant increases in the workload necessary to maintain the
dummies.
VI. Housekeeping Amendments
    The agency proposes the following housekeeping and other amendments
to Subpart O.
    1. NHTSA proposes to amend the title of Subpart O to add the word
``adult'' between ``5th percentile'' and ``female'' for clarity.
    2. The agency proposes to remove the words ``Alpha Version'' from
the title of Subpart O. During adoption of some of the subparts of Part
572 NHTSA had decided that referring to the alpha, beta, etc.,
``versions'' of the test dummies would better distinguish a current
version of an ATD from a previous version. The agency later decided
this naming convention was not helpful and has not followed it.
Accordingly, we would like to remove ``Alpha Version'' from the title
of Subpart O since the naming convention is no longer used.
    3. This NPRM proposes to revise Subpart O's references to SAE J211
parts 1 and 2 and to SAE J1733 to refer to the most up-to-date versions
of the standards. SAE J211 is revised with improved diagrams for
defining the dummy coordinate system, and corrections to minor mistakes
in print. New information and recommendations for data system
grounding, sensor cable shielding, and minimizing the effects of
transducer resonance are included. Clarifications on data processing
are also included. J1733 is revised with improved diagrams for defining
the dummy coordinate system (for the HIII-5F, the system itself is
unchanged).
VII. Regulatory Analyses and Notices
Executive Order 12866, Executive Order 13563, and DOT Order 2100.6
    We have considered the potential impact of this proposed rule under
Executive Orders 12866 and 13563, and DOT Order 2100.6, and have
determined that it is nonsignificant. This rulemaking document was not
reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under E.O. 12866.
We have considered the qualitative costs and benefits of this NPRM
under the principles of E.O. 12866.
    As stated in 49 CFR 572.3, Application, Part 572 does not in itself
impose duties or liabilities on any person. It only serves to describe
the test tools that measure the performance of occupant protection
systems. Thus, this Part 572 proposed rule itself does not impose any
requirements on anyone. Businesses are affected only if they choose to
manufacture or test with the dummy. Because the economic impacts of
this rule are minimal, no further regulatory evaluation is necessary.
    This NPRM proposes changes to the specifications of the HIII-5F
chest jacket and spine box. For entities testing with the dummy, the
proposed revisions are intended to resolve issues with the fit and
availability of the jacket and a noise artifact from the spine box.
Neither change would impose new requirements on vehicle manufacturers.
    With respect to benefits, the dummy would not change in any way
other than to improve its usability and objectivity. This rulemaking
benefits the public by specifying a more objective test tool, which
lessens the burden of dummy end-users in performing tests and
interpreting test results. It also benefits vehicle manufacturers by
providing certainty about which test jacket and spine box NHTSA will
use in compliance tests with the HIII 5th percentile adult female ATD,
and assurance about the continued availability of the jacket. This
rulemaking benefits NHTSA as the agency would no longer have to
maintain test jackets of different designs and take steps to match the
compliance test jacket with that specified by the vehicle
manufacturers. Specifying the new test jacket and spine box ensures the
long-term availability of a test jacket for compliance tests.
    The costs associated with this rulemaking are limited to those
associated with acquiring new dummy parts. We tentatively conclude that
the proposed changes would not necessitate the purchasing of any parts
that would not have been purchased in the normal course of business in
the absence of the proposed changes.
    We do not believe the proposed chest jacket changes would impose
any additional costs compared to what would have been expended if we
did not adopt the proposed changes. Because a chest jacket eventually
wears out, it must be replaced. Dummy refurbishments and part
replacements are a routine part of ATD testing. The agency understands
that industry has essentially run out of its supply of the older FTSS
and Denton jackets. We further understand that industry has been
replacing worn-out FTSS and Denton jackets with new jackets built to
the SAE J2921 specifications. While the FTSS and Denton jackets are not
consistent with the proposed specifications, we believe that chest
jackets built to the SAE J2921 specifications would meet the proposed
specifications. Because industry and testing labs need to replace the
chest jacket in the regular course of business--regardless of whether
the proposed changes are adopted--and the only available replacement
chest jackets conform to the proposed specifications, we believe the
proposed chest jacket
[[Page 70924]]
specifications would not impose any additional costs on industry.\26\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \26\ For the case of the HIII-5F, a new jacket costs about $850.
If a new jacket is installed on an existing dummy, additional
refurbishments or tuning of that dummy may be needed in order for it
to pass the Subpart O qualification tests. Depending on the
condition and age of the dummy, several other parts may need to be
replaced at a cost of up to $10,000. However, dummy refurbishments
and part replacements are an inherent part of testing and many of
the additional parts are often replaced on a regular schedule. In
other words, some of the parts would eventually be replaced, and the
costs of the replacement parts can be amortized over a number of
tests.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The revised spine box, which is not typically replaced during
routine maintenance, costs about $600. End users do not have to
purchase a revised spine box. They can compensate for the design
shortcoming of the current spine box by disassembling the dummy and re-
torqueing the relevant fasteners by hand before each test.
Executive Order 13771
    Executive Order 13771, titled ``Reducing Regulation and Controlling
Regulatory Costs,'' directs that, unless prohibited by law, whenever an
executive department or Agency publicly proposes for notice and comment
or otherwise promulgates a new regulation, it shall identify at least
two existing regulations to be repealed. In addition, any new
incremental costs associated with new regulations shall, to the extent
permitted by law, be offset by the elimination of existing costs. Only
those rules deemed significant under section 3(f) of Executive Order
12866, ``Regulatory Planning and Review,'' are subject to these
requirements. As discussed above, this rule is not a significant rule
under Executive Order 12866 and, accordingly, is not subject to the
offset requirements of 13771.
Executive Order 13609: Promoting International Regulatory Cooperation
    The policy statement in section 1 of Executive Order 13609
provides, in part:
    The regulatory approaches taken by foreign governments may
differ from those taken by U.S. regulatory agencies to address
similar issues. In some cases, the differences between the
regulatory approaches of U.S. agencies and those of their foreign
counterparts might not be necessary and might impair the ability of
American businesses to export and compete internationally. In
meeting shared challenges involving health, safety, labor, security,
environmental, and other issues, international regulatory
cooperation can identify approaches that are at least as protective
as those that are or would be adopted in the absence of such
cooperation. International regulatory cooperation can also reduce,
eliminate, or prevent unnecessary differences in regulatory
requirements.
    The proposed revisions are intended to resolve issues with the fit
and availability of the jacket and a noise artifact from the spine box.
Neither change would impose new requirements on vehicle manufacturers.
NHTSA does not believe the proposal would lead to any reduction in
harmonization.
Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)
    Executive Order 13132 requires agencies to develop an accountable
process to ensure ``meaningful and timely input by State and local
officials in the development of regulatory policies that have
federalism implications.'' ``Policies that have federalism
implications'' is defined in the Executive Order to include regulations
that have ``substantial direct effects on the States, on the
relationship between the national government and the States, or on the
distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of
government.''
    NHTSA has analyzed this proposed amendment in accordance with the
principles and criteria set forth in E.O. 13132. The agency has
determined that this proposal does not have sufficient federalism
implications to warrant consultation and the preparation of a
federalism assessment.
National Environmental Policy Act
    NHTSA has analyzed this proposal for the purposes of the National
Environmental Policy Act and determined that it will not have any
significant impact on the quality of the human environment.
Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)
    With respect to the review of the promulgation of a new regulation,
section 3(b) of Executive Order 12988, ``Civil Justice Reform'' (61 FR
4729, February 7, 1996) requires that Executive agencies make every
reasonable effort to ensure that the regulation: (1) Clearly specifies
the preemptive effect; (2) clearly specifies the effect on existing
Federal law or regulation; (3) provides a clear legal standard for
affected conduct, while promoting simplification and burden reduction;
(4) clearly specifies the retroactive effect, if any; (5) adequately
defines key terms; and (6) addresses other important issues affecting
clarity and general draftsmanship under any guidelines issued by the
Attorney General. This document is consistent with that requirement.
    Pursuant to this Order, NHTSA notes as follows. The issue of
preemption is discussed above in connection with E.O. 13132. NHTSA
notes further that there is no requirement that individuals submit a
petition for reconsideration or pursue other administrative proceeding
before they may file suit in court.
Regulatory Flexibility Act
    Pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.,
as amended by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act
(SBREFA) of 1996), whenever an agency is required to publish a proposed
or final rule, it must prepare and make available for public comment a
regulatory flexibility analysis that describes the effect of the rule
on small entities (i.e., small businesses, small organizations, and
small governmental jurisdictions), unless the head of the agency
certifies the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a
substantial number of small entities. The Small Business
Administration's regulations at 13 CFR part 121 define a small
business, in part, as a business entity ``which operates primarily
within the United States.'' (13 CFR 121.105(a)).
    NHTSA has considered the effects of this rulemaking under the
Regulatory Flexibility Act. I hereby certify that this rulemaking
action would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial
number of small entities. This action would not have a significant
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities because the
revisions to the test dummy would not impose any requirements on
anyone. NHTSA would use the revised ATD in agency testing but would not
require anyone to manufacture the dummy or to test motor vehicles or
motor vehicle equipment with it. Further, small vehicle manufacturers
that choose to test with the 5th percentile adult female dummy would
not be significantly impacted by this rulemaking. The proposal would
simply replace the chest jacket and spine box now used with the test
dummy with more up-to-date equipment. Since chest jackets must
periodically be replaced on the test dummy because they wear out, this
amendment would not significantly affect end users of the ATD (they
will continue to do what they already do). Similarly, the change to the
new spine box would not significantly affect small vehicle
manufacturers. It entails a simple one-time replacement where the old
part would be switched out with the new.
Incorporation by Reference
    Under regulations issued by the Office of the Federal Register (1
CFR 51.5(a)), an agency, as part of a proposed rule that includes
material incorporated by reference, must summarize material that
[[Page 70925]]
is proposed to be incorporated by reference and must discuss the ways
the material proposed to be incorporated by reference is reasonably
available to interested parties or how the agency worked to make
materials available to interested parties.
    This proposed rule would incorporate by reference updated versions
of a parts list, drawings, and a manual into 49 CFR part 572, subpart
O. This material is published by NHTSA (with permission from SAE
International). The contents of the documents are summarized in
Sections II.e and III.b, above, and a draft of the documents that would
be incorporated by reference has been placed in the docket for this
rulemaking for interested parties to review.
    This proposed rule would also incorporate updated versions of SAE
Recommended Practice J211/1 parts 1 and 2 and SAE J1733. Older versions
of these documents are already incorporated by reference into Subpart
O. The changes in the updated versions are summarized in Section VI,
above. The version currently incorporated by reference is available in
SAE International's online reading room.\27\ The updated version is
available for review at NHTSA and is available for purchase from SAE
International.
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    \27\ https://www.sae.org/standards/reading-room.
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National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act
    Under the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995
(NTTAA) (Public Law 104-113), ``all Federal agencies and departments
shall use technical standards that are developed or adopted by
voluntary consensus standards bodies, using such technical standards as
a means to carry out policy objectives or activities determined by the
agencies and departments.'' Voluntary consensus standards are technical
standards (e.g., materials specifications, test methods, sampling
procedures, and business practices) that are developed or adopted by
voluntary consensus standards bodies, such as SAE. The NTTAA directs
this Agency to provide Congress, through OMB, explanations when the
Agency decides not to use available and applicable voluntary consensus
standards.
    SAE has published information reports on the HIII 5th percentile
adult female's chest jacket and spine box which today's proposal
incorporates in full. The foregoing sections of this document discuss
in detail SAE's work in these areas: SAE J2921 (Chest Jacket) and SAE
J2915 (Spine Box). To the extent the NPRM has a few specifications
beyond SAE J2921, we explain our belief that they are necessary to
ensure a sufficient level of uniformity between jackets produced by
different manufacturers going forward, and to prevent discrepancies in
jacket designs from reoccurring in the future.
    In addition, the following voluntary consensus standards have been
used in developing this NPRM:
     SAE Recommended Practice J211/1_201403 (March 2014),
``Electronic Instrumentation;''
     SAE Recommended Practice J211/2_201406 (June 2014),
``Photographic Instrumentation''; and
     SAE J1733_201811 (November 2018), ``Sign Convention for
Vehicle Crash Testing.''
Paperwork Reduction Act
    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3501, et
seq.), Federal agencies must obtain approval from the Office of
Management and Budget (OMB) for each collection of information they
conduct, sponsor, or require through regulations. This rulemaking would
not establish any new information collection requirements.
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act
    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4) (UMRA)
requires agencies to prepare a written assessment of the costs,
benefits, and other effects of proposed or final rules that include a
Federal mandate likely to result in the expenditures by States, local
or tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of
more than $100 million annually (adjusted annually for inflation with
base year of 1995). Adjusting this amount by the implicit gross
domestic product price deflator for 2013 results in $142 million
(109.929/75.324 = 1.42). The assessment may be included in conjunction
with other assessments, as it is here.
    This proposed rule would not impose any unfunded mandates under the
UMRA. This proposed rule does not meet the definition of a Federal
mandate because it does not impose requirements on anyone. It amends 49
CFR part 572 by adding specifications for a new test jacket and spine
box for the 5th percentile adult female dummy that NHTSA uses in agency
compliance tests. This NPRM would affect only those businesses that
choose to manufacture or test with the dummy. This proposed rule is not
likely to result in expenditures by State, local or tribal governments
of more than $100 million annually.
Plain Language
    Executive Order 12866 and E.O. 13563 require each agency to write
all rules in plain language. Application of the principles of plain
language includes consideration of the following questions:
     Have we organized the material to suit the public's needs?
     Are the requirements in the rule clearly stated?
     Does the rule contain technical language or jargon that
isn't clear?
     Would a different format (grouping and order of sections,
use of headings, paragraphing) make the rule easier to understand?
     Would more (but shorter) sections be better?
     Could we improve clarity by adding tables, lists, or
diagrams?
     What else could we do to make the rule easier to
understand?
    If you have any responses to these questions, please include them
in your comments on this proposal.
Regulation Identifier Number (RIN)
    The Department of Transportation assigns a regulation identifier
number (RIN) to each regulatory action listed in the Unified Agenda of
Federal Regulations. The Regulatory Information Service Center
publishes the Unified Agenda in April and October of each year. You may
use the RIN contained in the heading at the beginning of this document
to find this action in the Unified Agenda.
Privacy Act
    Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments
received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual
submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf
of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review DOT's
complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published on
April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78).
VIII. Public Participation
How do I prepare and submit comments?
     To ensure that your comments are correctly filed in the
Docket, please include the Docket Number found in the heading of this
document in your comments.
     Your comments must not be more than 15 pages long.\28\
NHTSA established this limit to encourage you to write your primary
comments in a concise fashion. However, you may
[[Page 70926]]
attach necessary additional documents to your comments, and there is no
limit on the length of the attachments.
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    \28\ 49 CFR 553.21.
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     If you are submitting comments electronically as a PDF
(Adobe) file, NHTSA asks that the documents be submitted using the
Optical Character Recognition (OCR) process, thus allowing NHTSA to
search and copy certain portions of your submissions.
     Please note that pursuant to the Data Quality Act, in
order for substantive data to be relied on and used by NHTSA, it must
meet the information quality standards set forth in the OMB and DOT
Data Quality Act guidelines. Accordingly, NHTSA encourages you to
consult the guidelines in preparing your comments. DOT's guidelines may
be accessed at https://www.transportation.gov/regulations/dot-information-dissemination-quality-guidelines.
Tips for Preparing Your Comments
    When submitting comments, please remember to:
     Identify the rulemaking by docket number and other
identifying information (subject heading, Federal Register date and
page number).
     Explain why you agree or disagree, suggest alternatives,
and substitute language for your requested changes.
     Describe any assumptions you make and provide any
technical information and/or data that you used.
     If you estimate potential costs or burdens, explain how
you arrived at your estimate in sufficient detail to allow for it to be
reproduced.
     Provide specific examples to illustrate your concerns, and
suggest alternatives.
     Explain your views as clearly as possible, avoiding the
use of profanity or personal threats.
     To ensure that your comments are considered by the agency,
make sure to submit them by the comment period deadline identified in
the DATES section above.
    For additional guidance on submitting effective comments, visit:
https://www.regulations.gov/docs/Tips_For_Submitting_Effective_Comments.pdf.
How can I be sure that my comments were received?
    If you wish Docket Management to notify you upon its receipt of
your comments, enclose a self-addressed, stamped postcard in the
envelope containing your comments. Upon receiving your comments, Docket
Management will return the postcard by mail.
How do I submit confidential business information?
    If you wish to submit any information under a claim of
confidentiality, you should submit three copies of your complete
submission, including the information you claim to be confidential
business information, to the Chief Counsel, NHTSA, at the address given
above under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. In addition, you should
submit a copy, from which you have deleted the claimed confidential
business information, to the docket at the address given above under
ADDRESSES. When you send a comment containing information claimed to be
confidential business information, you should include a cover letter
setting forth the information specified in our confidential business
information regulation. (49 CFR part 512)
Will the agency consider late comments?
    We will consider all comments received before the close of business
on the comment closing date indicated above under DATES. To the extent
possible, we will also consider comments that the docket receives after
that date. If the docket receives a comment too late for us to consider
in developing a final rule (assuming that one is issued), we will
consider that comment as an informal suggestion for future rulemaking
action.
How can I read the comments submitted by other people?
    You may read the comments received by the docket at the address
given above under ADDRESSES. The hours of the docket are indicated
above in the same location. You may also see the comments on the
internet. To read the comments on the internet, go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for accessing the
dockets.
    Please note that even after the comment closing date, we will
continue to file relevant information in the docket as it becomes
available. Further, some people may submit late comments. Accordingly,
we recommend that you periodically check the Docket for new material.
You can arrange with the docket to be notified when others file
comments in the docket. See www.regulations.gov for more information.
List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 572
    Motor vehicle safety, Incorporation by reference.
    In consideration of the foregoing, NHTSA proposes to amend 49 CFR
part 572 as follows:
PART 572--ANTHROPOMORPHIC TEST DEVICES
0
1. The authority citation for Part 572 continues to read as follows:
    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 322, 30111, 30115, 30117 and 30166;
delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.95.
0
2. Revise the heading of Subpart O to read as follows:
Subpart O--Hybrid III 5th Percentile Adult Female Test Dummy
0
3. Revise Sec.  572.130 to read as follows:
Sec.  572.130  Incorporation by reference.
    (a) Certain material is incorporated by reference (IBR) into this
part with the approval of the Director of the Federal Register under 5
U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. To enforce any edition other than that
specified in this section, NHTSA must publish a document in the Federal
Register and the material must be available to the public. All approved
material is available for inspection at the Department of
Transportation, Docket Operations, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue
SE, Washington DC 20590, telephone 202-366-9826, and is available from
the sources listed in the following paragraphs. It is also available
for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration
(NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA,
email [email protected] or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.
    (b) NHTSA Technical Information Services, 1200 New Jersey Ave. SE,
Washington, DC 20590, telephone 202-366-5965.
    (1) A parts/drawing list entitled: ``Hybrid III 5th Percentile
Adult Female Crash Test Dummy Parts List, ([date to be determined]),''
IBR approved for Sec.  572.131.
    (2) A drawings and specification package entitled ``Parts List and
Drawings, Part 572 Subpart O Hybrid III Fifth Percentile Adult Female
Crash Test Dummy (HIII-5F) Revision K ([date to be determined]),'' IBR
approved for Sec.  572.131, and consisting of:
    (i) Drawing No. 880105-100X, Head Assembly, IBR approved for
Sec. Sec.  572.131, 572.132, 572.133, 572.134, 572.135, and 572.137;
    (ii) Drawing No. 880105-250, Neck Assembly, IBR approved for
Sec. Sec.  572.131, 572.133, 572.134, 572.135, and 572.137;
    (iii) Drawing No. 880105-300, Upper Torso Assembly, IBR approved
for Sec. Sec.  572.131, 572.134, 572.135, and 572.137;
    (iv) Drawing No. 880105-450, Lower Torso Assembly, IBR approved for
[[Page 70927]]
Sec. Sec.  572.131, 572.134, 572.135, and 572.137;
    (v) Drawing No. 880105-560-1, Complete Leg Assembly--left, IBR
approved for Sec. Sec.  572.131, 572.135, 572.136, and 572.137;
    (vi) Drawing No. 880105-560-2, Complete Leg Assembly--right, IBR
approved for Sec. Sec.  572.131, 572.135, 572.136, and 572.137;
    (vii) Drawing No. 880105-728-1, Complete Arm Assembly--left, IBR
approved for Sec. Sec.  572.131, 572.134, and 572.135 as part of the
complete dummy assembly;
    (viii) Drawing No. 880105-728-2, Complete Arm Assembly--right, IBR
approved for Sec. Sec.  572.131, 572.134, and 572.135 as part of the
complete dummy assembly.
    (3) A procedures manual entitled ``Procedures for Assembly,
Disassembly, and Inspection (PADI) Subpart O Hybrid III Fifth
Percentile Adult Female Crash Test Dummy (HIII-5F) Revision K ([date to
be determined]),'' IBR approved for Sec.  572.132.
    (c) SAE International, 400 Commonwealth Drive, Warrendale, PA
15096, call 1-877-606-7323.
    (1) SAE Recommended Practice J211/1_201403, ``Instrumentation for
Impact Test--Part 1, Electronic Instrumentation,'' (March 2014), IBR
approved for Sec.  572.137;
    (2) SAE Recommended Practice J211/2_201406, ``Instrumentation for
Impact Tests--Part 2, Photographic Instrumentation,'' (June 2014), IBR
approved for Sec.  572.137; and
    (3) SAE J1733_201811, ``Sign Convention for Vehicle Crash
Testing,'' (November 2018), IBR approved for Sec.  572.137.
0
4. Amend Sec.  572.131 by revising paragraph (a)(2) introductory text
to read as follows:
Sec.  572.131  General description.
    (a) * * *
    (2) Parts List and Drawings, Part 572 Subpart O Hybrid III Fifth
Percentile Adult Female Crash Test Dummy (HIII 5F), Revision K ([date
to be determined]) (all incorporated by reference, see Sec.  572.130).
* * * * *
0
5. Amend Sec.  572.137 by revsing paragraph (m) introductory text, and
paragraph (n) to read as follows:
Sec.  572.137  Test conditions and instrumentation.
* * * * *
    (m) The outputs of acceleration and force-sensing devices installed
in the dummy and in the test apparatus specified by this part shall be
recorded in individual data channels that conform to SAE Recommended
Practice J211/1_201403, ``Instrumentation for Impact Test--Part 1,
Electronic Instrumentation,'' and SAE Recommended Practice J211/
2_201406, ``Instrumentation for Impact Tests--Part 2, Photographic
Instrumentation'' (incorporated by reference, see Sec.  572.130),
except as noted, with channel classes as follows:
* * * * *
    (n) Coordinate signs for instrumentation polarity shall conform to
SAE J1733_201811, ``Sign Convention for Vehicle Crash Testing,''
(incorporated by reference, see Sec.  572.130).
* * * * *
    Issued in Washington, DC, under authority delegated in 49 CFR
1.95 and 501.4.
James Clayton Owens,
Acting Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2019-27210 Filed 12-23-19; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P