SAFER Barrier earns award

INDIANAPOLIS, Friday, Oct. 10, 2003 -- Research & Development Magazine, a leading publication covering the latest breakthroughs in practical, hands-on technology, has named the SAFER Barrier to its prestigious "R&D 100 Awards" list for 2003. The...

INDIANAPOLIS, Friday, Oct. 10, 2003 -- Research & Development Magazine, a leading publication covering the latest breakthroughs in practical, hands-on technology, has named the SAFER Barrier to its prestigious "R&D 100 Awards" list for 2003.

The SAFER (Steel And Foam Energy Reduction) Barrier, developed at the Midwest Roadside Safety Facility at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, was first installed in May 2002 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The barrier was created in collaboration between the Indy Racing League and UN-L that began in 1998. NASCAR joined the effort in September 2000.

R&D Magazine, based in Oak Brook, Ill., caters to scientists, engineers and administrators in the private business, public administration and academic sectors that engage in applied research and development.

The magazine cited two key reasons for including the SAFER Barrier in its R&D 100 Awards list: the reduction of the severity of driver injuries resulting from high-speed impacts with the barrier instead of a traditional concrete retaining wall and the barrier's proven ability to absorb energy in a crash without causing the car to "bounce" back into the path of other cars.

The SAFER Barrier is constructed of rectangular steel tubes, welded together to form a unified element. Bundles of 2-inch thick sheets of extruded, closed-cell polystyrene are placed in modules between the steel tubing and the existing concrete wall on the outside of the four corners of the 2.5-mile oval at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Following the installation of the SAFER Barrier at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the barrier was installed along portions of the inside retaining wall at the 2.66-mile Talladega Superspeedway in September 2002. After additional tests and research at the Midwest Roadside Safety Facility to adapt the SAFER Barrier to the tighter-radius turns of short tracks, the SAFER Barrier was installed at the ¾-mile Richmond (Va.) International Raceway and the 1.058-mile New Hampshire International Speedway in 2003.

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2004 IMS tickets: Tickets and information on all three events in 2004 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway -- the Indianapolis 500, Brickyard 400 and United States Grand Prix -- are available by contacting the IMS ticket office at (800) 822-INDY, (317) 492-6700 or logging on to www.indianapolismotorspeedway.com.

-ims-

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Series Automotive , General