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GMU is now home to collision research center

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Print this page by Veronica Garabelli
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Research at the Center for Collision Safety and
Analysis focuses on transportation safety and security.

The former National Crash Analysis Center has found a new home.

Until moving to George Mason University in Fairfax last summer, the center had been housed at George Washington University since 1992. Now known as the Center for Collision Safety and Analysis (CCSA), the organization’s research focuses on transportation safety and security. According to its website, collision safety and analysis concerns “understanding events where objects collide or crash, the nature of the impacts, correlations to outcomes and potentials for mitigating the consequences.”

The center’s director, Cing-Dao “Steve” Kan, says the organization saw better growth opportunities at GMU for research and education. The center currently is supporting a master’s degree program at GMU with an emphasis on transportation safety. In the future, CCSA plans to support degrees offered to GMU’s undergraduate and doctoral students. The center has a dozen full-time employees and three graduate students. “By next summer we should have at least 10 graduate students,” Kan says. 

The center is a partnership with the National Center for Manufacturing Sciences (NCMS), a nonprofit group that helps manufacturers and other industries stay competitive. Members include Detroit-based General Motors, Chicago-based The Boeing Co. and Morristown, N.J.-based Honeywell.

NCMS’ president and CEO Rick Jarman says CCSA’s simulations and computer modeling work would help researchers understand the complex interactions that occur during a collision.

“Manufacturers need big data tools like this to stay competitive in the global marketplace,” Jarman said in a statement made when the opening of CCSA was announced.  “We’re proud to be partnering with George Mason on such an important program.”

Most of the center’s funding comes from government agencies with the rest provided by corporations, Kan says. It is currently working with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to evaluate the safety of future light-weight vehicles. The center also works with auto manufacturers such as Honda, Ford and Nissan and their suppliers and participates in collaborative research with other institutions and universities.

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