1993-03-01

Rear-End Collisions - A Study of the Influence of Backrest Properties on Head-Neck Motion using a New Dummy Neck 930343

Neck injuries in rear-end collisions are usually caused by a swift extension-flexion motion of the neck and mostly occur at low impact velocities (typically less than 20 km/h). Although the injuries are classified as AIS 1, they often lead to permanent disability. The injury risk varies a great deal between different car models. Epidemiological studies show that the effectiveness of passenger-car head-restraints in rear-end collisions generally remains poor.
Rear-end collisions were simulated on a crash-sled by means of a Hybrid III dummy with a new neck (Rear Impact Dummy-neck). Seats were chosen from production car models. Differences in head-neck kinematics and kinetics between the different seats were observed at velocity changes of 5 and 12.5 km/h. Comparisons were made with an unmodified Hybrid III.
The results show that the head-neck motion is influenced by the stiffness and elasticity of the backrest as well as by the properties of the head-restraint. The elastic rebound of the backrest can aggravate the violence of the whiplash-motion and delay contact between the head and the head-restraint.

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