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The flair of Volvo cars, the human nose does not like him

The company Volvo Car Corporation is always looking for a device that can replace the human nose or, more precisely, detect good and bad smells. That is why it appeals to a group that will conduct olfactory tests. This group consists of eight people whose sense of smell is considered "normal", to help designers in their choice of materials and production methods. Particular attention will be paid to the interior of the vehicle.

Mandate: Ensure that new Volvo "feels" the Volvo! "The olfactory perceptions vary from one person to another, stated Patrick Libander, test engineer at Volvo Cars and group leader olfactory test. The generational and cultural differences are, and they can also be explained by the associations that people make based on their personal experiences. This is one of the elements that make my job so interesting. "The interior of a vehicle is composed of a multitude of different materials that contain chemicals. Most of these substances remain "trapped" inside of materials, but in small amounts can escape, thus creating the new car smell. The test group control these substances and odors that can result in the cockpit.

The group is formed of two teams of four people each, which are subject to a selection process to ensure they do not have a developed sense of smell too - or above average - and their olfactory abilities are relatively similar. "We exclude people who love the smell that other group members feel unpleasant, even for those who can not detect odors or that smell is highly developed. All members must be non-smokers, given that smoking may taint the smell, said Libander. He added that the group should evaluate the odor of the elements of interior trim, according to a scale of one to six, one meaning "not detectable" and six "unbearable". Only elements that receive a maximum score of three, meaning "clearly detectable without being disagreeable" will be approved. Interior designers also use a solar simulator at SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden, has Boras, Sweden. To test a vehicle whose inner lining is made of a new material, you can put it in the simulator for a few hours or until the temperature reaches 65? C. Analytical equipment is then used to measure the levels of volatile organic compounds and total aldehyde in the cockpit. Finally, group members take place in the vehicle and evaluate the odor by a scale established. "We have severe demands on ourselves and our suppliers, concluded Libander. The Scent also contributes to passenger comfort. "

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