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Dr. Harold Mertz Earns SAE International Arnold W. Siegel International Transportation Safety Award

WARRENDALE, Pa., Oct. 30, 2014 -

Dr. Harold J. Mertz, General Motors Technical Fellow (retired), has won the SAE International Arnold W. Siegel International Transportation Safety Award. He will receive the award during the Awards Ceremony at the SAE 2015 World Congress, which will be held April 21-23 at Cobo Center in Detroit, MI.


The award recognizes individuals whose accomplishments include outstanding international research, innovation and contributions to crash injury protection, crash injury biomechanics and crash injury design for all mobility vehicles: land, air, sea and space. The award is funded through the generous support of Arnold W. Siegel, SAE Fellow and SAE Medal of Honor recipient.


Dr. Mertz began working on Biomechanics Research Projects at Wayne State University in 1960 as an undergraduate aeronautical student. As an Engineering Mechanics graduate student, he continued to work on biomechanics research projects and taught undergraduate Engineering Mechanics courses. He received his PhD in Engineering Mechanics in 1967 and was promoted to Assistant Professor in the Engineering Mechanics Department. Dr. Mertz began working for General Motors in 1969, conducting research to determine human tolerance to impact, developing crash test dummies and Injury Assessment Reference Values (IARVs), and working with car platform engineers to develop occupant restraint systems. He retired from GM in 2005 as a Technical Fellow in the Structure & Integration Center. 


For SAE International, Dr. Mertz has chaired several committees including the Human Biomechanics and Simulation Standards Committee, the Hybrid III Dummy Family Task Force, and task force that developed test procedures for evaluating out-of-position occupant interactions with deploying airbags. 


He has published many papers on various aspects of automotive safety considerations and received several awards, including the NHTSA Safety Award for Engineering Excellence for Development of Crash Test Dummies(1980) and for Outstanding Contributions to the Field of Automotive Safety (1996); the Gurdjian-Lissner Award of Excellence for Contributions to Head and Neck Injury Prevention (1985); the AORC Pathfinder Award for Outstanding Vision, Leadership and Integrity in the Fields of Biomechanics, Test Technology and Occupant Restraint Systems (1996); and the NHTSA Special Recognition Award for Outstanding Contributions in Biomechanics and in the Advancement of Automotive Safety (2003).  Dr. Mertz is an SAE International Fellow and he currently serves on the Stapp Car Crash Conference Advisory Board.


SAE International is a global association committed to being the ultimate knowledge source for the engineering profession. By uniting over 148,000 engineers and technical experts, we drive knowledge and expertise across a broad spectrum of industries. We act on two priorities: encouraging a lifetime of learning for mobility engineering professionals and setting the standards for industry engineering. We strive for a better world through the work of our philanthropic SAE Foundation, including programs like A World in Motion® and the Collegiate Design Series™.

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