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Technical Paper

Comparison of Hybrid III and THOR Dummies in Paired Small Overlap Tests

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is investigating small overlap crash test procedures for a possible consumer information program. Analysis of real-world small overlap crashes found a strong relationship between serious head and chest injuries and occupant compartment intrusion. The main sources of serious head injuries were from the A-pillar, dash panel, or door structure, suggesting head trajectories forward and outboard possibly bypassing the airbag. Chest injuries mainly were from steering wheel intrusion and seat belt loading. In developing this program, two test dummies were evaluated for predicting occupant injury risk: midsize male Hybrid III and THOR. In the collinear small overlap crash tests conducted here, results from the two dummies were similar. Both predicted a low risk of injury to the head and chest and sometimes a high risk of injury to the lower extremities. Head and torso kinematics also were similar between dummies.
Technical Paper

A New Calibration Specification for Linear Displacement Transducers

Linear displacement transducers may be used to measure deflection and, based on time histories, calculate rates of deflection and viscous criterion (VC). The current study documents that these transducers are subject to damage affecting the linearity of their responses, that this damage is not uncommon, and that the deviations from linearity can greatly affect calculations of deflection rate and VC. A calibration procedure to identify transducers with significantly non-linear responses is proposed.
Technical Paper

Changes in Vehicle Designs from Frontal Offset and Side Impact Crash Testing

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has been conducting frontal offset crash tests of new passenger vehicles and providing comparative crashworthiness information to the public since 1995. This program has resulted in large improvements in frontal crashworthiness largely because vehicle structures have been redesigned to prevent significant collapse of the occupant compartment. In late 2002, IIHS began a side impact crash test program in which the side-impacting barrier has been designed to simulate the geometry of the front ends of SUVs and pickups, which pose a much larger threat in side impacts than the lower front ends of cars. It is anticipated that this program, too, will result in changes in vehicle structure, in this case the structure of the vehicle side pillars and door hardware. Good performance in the side impact test also is likely to require installation of side airbags (or comparable system) to protect the head and/or chest.
Technical Paper

Effect of Hybrid III Leg Geometry on Upper Tibia Bending Moments

The knee and ankle joint pivots of the Hybrid III dummy's leg are positioned in approximately the same orientation as the knee and ankle joint rotation centers of a human in a normal driving posture. However, the dummy's leg assembly is not simply a straight member between these two pivots. It is a zigzag-shaped solid link composed of one long straight section in the middle and short angled sections at either end, which form the pivots. The upper and lower tibia load cells are mounted on the straight middle section, making the upper tibia load cell location anterior to the line between the ankle and knee pivots and the lower tibia load cell location slightly posterior to the line between the pivots. Hence, an approximately vertical force on the foot can act along the line behind the upper tibia load cell and in front of the lower tibia load cell, creating bending moments.
Technical Paper

Factors Contributing to Front-Side Compatibility: a Comparison of Crash Test Results

The occupants of passenger vehicles struck in the side by another vehicle are more likely to be fatally injured than are occupants of the striking vehicle. The risk of fatality in a side-struck car is higher still when the striking vehicle is a pickup or utility vehicle rather than a passenger car of the same mass. This suggests there are other factors inherent to pickup and utility vehicle design in addition to mass that contribute to this increased risk. In this paper, results are presented from a series of six 90-degree, front-to-side crash tests conducted with both vehicles moving. The side-struck vehicle, a Mercury Grand Marquis with a BioSID (biofidelic side impact dummy) in the driver position, was moving at 24 km/h (15 mi/h) in all tests.
Technical Paper

Crash Test Evaluation of Whiplash Injury Risk

A BioRID (biofidelic rear impact dummy) representing a 50th percentile adult male was seated in the front passenger seat of six new vehicle models in a series of low-speed crash tests. The neck injury criterion (NIC) and other dummy responses that may indicate whiplash injury risk were recorded. Both front-into- rear and rear-into-barrier tests with an average velocity change of 11 km/h were conducted. Head restraints were tested in both adjusted (up) and unadjusted (down) positions. Damage to all models was minor, and longitudinal vehicle accelerations were low (less than 7 g). Neck extension angles and bending moments were much less than injury assessment reference values (IARV) (80 degrees and 57 Nm, respectively), indicating low risk of hyperextension injuries. Neck tension and transverse forces also were less than IARVs used to indicate the risk of more serious neck injuries.
Technical Paper

Simulation of Head/Neck Impact Responses for Helmeted and Unhelmeted Motorcyclists

The purpose of this study was to assess, by use of computer simulations, the effectiveness of motorcycle helmets in reducing head and neck injuries in motorcyclist impacts. The computer model used was the MVMA Two-Dimensional Crash Victim Simulator. The study investigated a wide variety of impact conditions in order to establish a broad overall view of the effectiveness of helmets. It was found that helmet use invariably reduces dynamic responses which have a role in producing head injury and, in addition, almost always reduces the severity of neck response as well. For no configuration or condition does the helmet greatly increase the likelihood of neck injury. Thus, these simulations of a wide spectrum of motorcyclist impacts provide further evidence that helmet use significantly reduces the likelihood and severity of both head and neck injuries. This study was supported by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.