case | child car seat

“We care about the smallest passengers”


Developing a child restraint system (CRS) that meets the challenging ECE-R129 European safety standard (i-Size, evolution of the ECE-R44 standard).

The ECE-R129 features more load cases than the ECE-R44. This brings more complexity to the design; for instance the need of additional side-impact performance.

The car seat of this case study is called the 2wayPearl. It is a versatile child car seat which enables children to be positioned in two ways in the car. According to the i-Size regulation, it is required for children up to an age of fifteen months to be positioned in a rearward-facing way. Children older than fifteen months may be placed in a forward-facing position.


Computer Aided Engineering (CAE)-driven design enabled us to do a multitude of iterations in a very early development stage. This enables us to reduce the development time significantly and improve the overall design in terms of costs and performance.

We validate full product designs, to enable mass production. We do this by our CAE-driven design approach, in combination with our experience in material technology, design and processing. This enables a first-time-right design.

In addition, it is key to know and understand what implications regional legislations and consumer test methods have on design and engineering. This is especially important for a high safety and quality product, like a child car seat. Therefore, we continuously invest in being up to date in the newest safety requirements like UNECE-R129 and FMVSS213.

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We have analysed the performance of the existing Car Seat Family for compliance with the new standards using crash simulations including dummy and seatbelt. We specifically paid attention to rearward facing positioning during front impact and the available design space in the car. The new concept has been drawn up based on this analysis.


This specific child seat is convertible (i.e., front/rear facing and upright and reclined) using an adjustment mechanism. Therefore, the design has to endure for multiple load cases. This calls for an innovative production process, so it was chosen to use multiple plastic parts injection moulded around metal components. This resulted in a robust mechanism without an additional fixing process.


On each part, the most suitable material is selected. These are chosen based on stiffness, density and toughness. In esthetical parts, which also need to fulfil a structural function, we used polypropylen (PP). This material is highly suitable for large structured parts that are being strengthened with ribs. Long-glassfibre reinforced polypropylen (PP-LGF) and reinforced polyamide (PA-GF) are used for compact structural parts.


Injection moulding simulations determine the optimum gate locations to determine the most optimal fibre orientation. This is all done to optimise stiffness and strength and to manage the location of weld lines.

The outcome of the injection moulding simulations is directly used for our strength analysis. By coupling both analyses and using our insights in material and processing knowledge. This enables us to deliver the most optimal design in terms of strength and cycle time.


Developing a child car seat is an extensive process. Safety is the first and foremost requirement. Next to that, making sure the child car seat is easy to use and preventing miss-use by making the installation method easier is important as well. One of our partners, VanBerlo, took case of this in the 2wayPearl, along with the esthetical design, taking in account branding and parental trends. After the design has been established and the feasibility studies have been conducted, the product was validated at TASS International. With this strong partnership, we have been able to fully support our client in the total development of their child car seat.

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