Head Impact Mechanisms of a Child Occupant Seated in a Child Restraint System as Determined by Impact Testing 2011-22-0006
In side collision accidents, the head is the most frequently injured body region for child occupants seated in a child restraint system (CRS). Accident analyses show that a child's head can move out of the CRS shell, make hard contact with the vehicle interior, and thus sustain serious injuries. In order to improve child head protection in side collisions, it is necessary to understand the injury mechanism of a child in the CRS whose head makes contact with the vehicle interior. In this research, an SUV-to-car oblique side crash test was conducted to reconstruct such head contacts. A Q3s child dummy was seated in a CRS in the rear seat of the target car. The Q3s child dummy's head moved out beyond the CRS side wing, moved laterally, and made contact with the side window glass and the doorsill. It was demonstrated that the hard head contact, which produced a high HIC value, could occur in side collisions. A series of sled tests was carried out to reproduce the dummy kinematic behavior observed in the SUV-to-car crash test, and the sled test conditions such as sled angle, ECE seat slant angle and velocity-time history that duplicated the kinematic behavior were determined. A parametric study also was conducted with the sled tests; and it was found that the impact angle, harness slack, chest clip, and the CRS side wing shape affected the torso motion and head contact with the vehicle interior.