Vehicle Crash Rail

A majority of the crash tests conducted at Exponent’s Test and Engineering Center (TEC) are based on specific accident sequences and involve vehicles ranging from bicycles to tractor-trailers.  With Exponent’s unique crash rail facility, we are able to reproduce a wide variety of accident scene features including ditches, poles, trees, building structures, guardrails, and roadway appurtenances.

Notable features of our crash rail system include:


  • 1280-foot long monorail system and concrete impact surface
  • Impact speed capabilities up to 100 mph with a mid-size passenger car (single-moving)
  • Two-moving vehicle impacts
    • Impacts at any approach angle
    • At least one vehicle can be oriented with a pre-impact side slip angle
    • Vehicle speed ratios ranging from 1:1 up to nearly 11:1
  • Impacts into dirt embankments and other soil-installed objects
  • Underground camera pits at our fixed barrier and mid-crash rail location allow photographic coverage of vehicle underbody components
  • Fixed, rigid barrier that can accommodate crash forces in excess of 1,200,000 lb and energy levels in excess of 1,000,000 ft-lb.
  • Dedicated area for FMVSS dolly rollover tests on both soil and concrete surfaces
  • Crash rail test surface can accommodate installation of various barriers, structures, and roadside objects
  • Portable temperature-controlled shed to maintain test dummy environmental requirements

Professionals