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Technical Paper

Comfortable Head and Neck Postures in Reclined Seating for Use in Automobile Head Rest Design

Little information is available on passenger preferences for posture and support in highly reclined seat configurations. To address this gap, a laboratory study was conducted with 24 adult passengers at seat back angles from 23 to 53 degrees. Passenger preferences for head and neck posture with and without head support were recorded. This paper presents the characteristics of the passengers’ preferred head support with respect to thorax, head, and neck posture.
Journal Article

Sensations Associated with Motion Sickness Response during Passenger Vehicle Operations on a Test Track

Motion sickness in road vehicles may become an increasingly important problem as automation transforms drivers into passengers. The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute has developed a vehicle-based platform to study motion sickness in passenger vehicles. A test-track study was conducted with 52 participants who reported susceptibility to motion sickness. The participants completed in-vehicle testing on a 20-minute scripted, continuous drive that consisted of a series of frequent 90-degree turns, braking, and lane changes at the U-M Mcity facility. In addition to quantifying their level of motion sickness on a numerical scale, participants were asked to describe in words any motion-sickness-related sensations they experienced.
Technical Paper

Quantification of Sternum Morphomics and Injury Data

Crash safety researchers have an increased concern regarding the decreased thoracic deflection and the contributing injury causation factors among the elderly population. Sternum fractures are categorized as moderate severity injuries, but can have long term effects depending on the fragility and frailty of the occupant. Current research has provided detail on rib morphology, but very little information on sternum morphology, sternum fracture locations, and mechanisms of injury. The objective of this study is two-fold (1) quantify sternum morphology and (2) document sternum fracture locations using computed tomography (CT) scans and crash data. Thoracic CT scans from the University of Michigan Hospital database were used to measure thoracic depth, manubriosternal joint, sternum thickness and bone density. The sternum fracture locations and descriptions were extracted from 63 International Center for Automotive Medicine (ICAM) crash cases, of which 22 cases had corresponding CT scans.
Technical Paper

In-Vehicle Occupant Head Tracking Using aLow-Cost Depth Camera

Analyzing dynamic postures of vehicle occupants in various situations is valuable for improving occupant accommodation and safety. Accurate tracking of an occupant’s head is of particular importance because the head has a large range of motion, controls gaze, and may require special protection in dynamic events including crashes. Previous vehicle occupant posture studies have primarily used marker-based optical motion capture systems or multiple video cameras for tracking facial features or markers on the head. However, the former approach has limitations for collecting on-road data, and the latter is limited by requiring intensive manual postprocessing to obtain suitable accuracy. This paper presents an automated on-road head tracking method using a single Microsoft Kinect V2 sensor, which uses a time-of-flight measurement principle to obtain a 3D point cloud representing objects in the scene at approximately 30 Hz.
Technical Paper

Measured and LES Motored-Flow Kinetic Energy Evolution in the TCC-III Engine

A primary goal of large eddy simulation, LES, is to capture in-cylinder cycle-to-cycle variability, CCV. This is a first step to assess the efficacy of 35 consecutive computed motored cycles to capture the kinetic energy in the TCC-III engine. This includes both the intra-cycle production and dissipation as well as the kinetic energy CCV. The approach is to sample and compare the simulated three-dimensional velocity equivalently to the available two-component two-dimensional PIV velocity measurements. The volume-averaged scale-resolved kinetic energy from the LES is sampled in three slabs, which are volumes equal to the two axial and one azimuthal PIV fields-of-view and laser sheet thickness. Prior to the comparison, the effects of sampling a cutting plane versus a slab and slabs of different thicknesses are assessed. The effects of sampling only two components and three discrete planar regions is assessed.
Journal Article

Three-Dimensional Three-Component Air Flow Visualization in a Steady-State Engine Flow Bench Using a Plenoptic Camera

Plenoptic particle tracking velocimetry (PTV) shows great potential for three-dimensional, three-component (3D3C) flow measurement with a simple single-camera setup. It is therefore especially promising for applications in systems with limited optical access, such as internal combustion engines. The 3D visualization of a plenoptic imaging system is achieved by inserting a micro-lens array directly anterior to the camera sensor. The depth is calculated from reconstruction of the resulting multi-angle view sub-images. With the present study, we demonstrate the application of a plenoptic system for 3D3C PTV measurement of engine-like air flow in a steady-state engine flow bench. This system consists of a plenoptic camera and a dual-cavity pulsed laser. The accuracy of the plenoptic PTV system was assessed using a dot target moved by a known displacement between two PTV frames.
Technical Paper

Characterizing Vehicle Occupant Body Dimensions and Postures Using a Statistical Body Shape Model

Reliable, accurate data on vehicle occupant characteristics could be used to personalize the occupant experience, potentially improving both satisfaction and safety. Recent improvements in 3D camera technology and increased use of cameras in vehicles offer the capability to effectively capture data on vehicle occupant characteristics, including size, shape, posture, and position. In previous work, the body dimensions of standing individuals were reliably estimated by fitting a statistical body shape model (SBSM) to data from a consumer-grade depth camera (Microsoft Kinect). In the current study, the methodology was extended to consider seated vehicle occupants. The SBSM used in this work was developed using laser scan data gathered from 147 children with stature ranging from 100 to 160 cm and BMI from 12 to 27 kg/m2 in various sitting postures.
Technical Paper

Design Environment for Nonlinear Model Predictive Control

Model Predictive Control (MPC) design methods are becoming popular among automotive control researchers because they explicitly address an important challenge faced by today’s control designers: How does one realize the full performance potential of complex multi-input, multi-output automotive systems while satisfying critical output, state and actuator constraints? Nonlinear MPC (NMPC) offers the potential to further improve performance and streamline the development for those systems in which the dynamics are strongly nonlinear. These benefits are achieved in the MPC framework by using an on-line model of the controlled system to generate the control sequence that is the solution of a constrained optimization problem over a receding horizon.
Journal Article

A Fatigue Life Prediction Method of Laser Assisted Self-Piercing Rivet Joint for Magnesium Alloys

Due to magnesium alloy's poor weldability, other joining techniques such as laser assisted self-piercing rivet (LSPR) are used for joining magnesium alloys. This research investigates the fatigue performance of LSPR for magnesium alloys including AZ31 and AM60. Tensile-shear and coach peel specimens for AZ31 and AM60 were fabricated and tested for understanding joint fatigue performance. A structural stress - life (S-N) method was used to develop the fatigue parameters from load-life test results. In order to validate this approach, test results from multijoint specimens were compared with the predicted fatigue results of these specimens using the structural stress method. The fatigue results predicted using the structural stress method correlate well with the test results.
Journal Article

In-Vehicle Driver State Detection Using TIP-II

A transportable instrumentation package to collect driver, vehicle and environmental data is described. This system is an improvement on an earlier system and is called TIP-II [13]. Two new modules were designed and added to the original system: a new and improved physiological signal module (PH-M) replaced the original physiological signals module in TIP, and a new hand pressure on steering wheel module (HP-M) was added. This paper reports on exploratory tests with TIP-II. Driving data were collected from ten driver participants. Correlations between On-Board-Diagnostics (OBD), video data, physiological data and specific driver behavior such as lane departure and car following were investigated. Initial analysis suggested that hand pressure, skin conductance level, and respiration rate were key indicators of lane departure lateral displacement and velocity, immediately preceding lane departure; heart rate and inter-beat interval were affected during lane changes.
Technical Paper

The Quantification of Liver Anatomical Changes and Assessment of Occupant Liver Injury Patterns

Liver injuries can be significant in vehicle crashes. In this study, the liver anatomy was quantified in both adult and pediatric populations as a function of gender and age. Five anatomical liver measurements were determined using CT scans of 260 normal livers. These measurements include the area and volume, and the length, width, and girth of the liver (IRB HUM00041441). To characterize geometrical shape, an inscribed sphere and circumscribed ellipsoid were fitted on the measurements. In the pediatric population the liver area and volume continuously increased with age. When normalized by patient weight, volume measurements show a decrease in volume with age, suggesting that the liver occupies a smaller proportion of the body with age. In the adult population, liver measurements varied with gender. The superior and inferior locations of the liver were also recorded with respect to the spine. The lower portion was at the L3 in small children and at L2 as children approached puberty.
Technical Paper

Comparison of Verity and Volvo Methods for Fatigue Life Assessment of Welded Structures

Great efforts have been made to develop the ability to accurately and quickly predict the durability and reliability of vehicles in the early development stage, especially for welded joints, which are usually the weakest locations in a vehicle system. A reliable and validated life assessment method is needed to accurately predict how and where a welded part fails, while iterative testing is expensive and time consuming. Recently, structural stress methods based on nodal force/moment are becoming widely accepted in fatigue life assessment of welded structures. There are several variants of structural stress approaches available and two of the most popular methods being used in automotive industry are the Volvo method and the Verity method. Both methods are available in commercial software and some concepts and procedures related the nodal force/moment have already been included in several engineering codes.
Technical Paper

Understanding Work Task Assessment Sensitivity to the Prediction of Standing Location

Digital human models (DHM) are now widely used to assess worker tasks as part of manufacturing simulation. With current DHM software, the simulation engineer or ergonomist usually makes a manual estimate of the likely worker standing location with respect to the work task. In a small number of cases, the worker standing location is determined through physical testing with one or a few workers. Motion capture technology is sometimes used to aid in quantitative analysis of the resulting posture. Previous research has demonstrated the sensitivity of work task assessment using DHM to the accuracy of the posture prediction. This paper expands on that work by demonstrating the need for a method and model to accurately predict worker standing location. The effect of standing location on work task posture and the resulting assessment is documented through three case studies using the Siemens Jack DHM software.
Technical Paper

Factors Associated With Abdominal Injury in Frontal, Farside, and Nearside Crashes

The NASS-CDS (1998-2008) and CIREN datasets were analyzed to identify factors contributing to abdominal injury in crash environments where belt use and airbag deployment are common. In frontal impacts, the percentage of occupants sustaining abdominal injury is three times higher for unbelted compared to belted front-row adult occupants (p≺0.0001) at both AIS2+ and AIS3+ injury levels. Airbag deployment does not substantially affect the percentage of occupants who sustain abdominal injuries in frontal impacts (p=0.6171), while belt use reduces the percentage of occupants sustaining abdominal injury in both nearside and farside crashes (p≺0.0001). Right-front passengers in right-side impacts have the highest risk (1.91%) of AIS 3+ abdominal injury (p=0.03). The percentage of occupants with AIS 3+ abdominal injuries does not vary with age for frontal, nearside, or farside impacts.
Technical Paper

Validation of the Human Motion Simulation Framework: Posture Prediction for Standing Object Transfer Tasks

The Human Motion Simulation Framework is a hierarchical set of algorithms for physical task simulation and analysis. The Framework is capable of simulating a wide range of tasks, including standing and seated reaches, walking and carrying objects, and vehicle ingress and egress. In this paper, model predictions for the terminal postures of standing object transfer tasks are compared to data from 20 subjects with a wide range of body dimensions. Whole body postures were recorded using optical motion capture for one-handed and two-handed object transfers to target destinations at three angles from straight ahead and three heights. The hand and foot locations from the data were input to the HUMOSIM Framework Reference Implementation (HFRI) in the Jack human modeling software. The whole-body postures predicted by the HFRI were compared to the measured postures using a set of measures selected for their importance to ergonomic analysis.
Journal Article

Fatigue Behavior of Laser Welds in Lap-Shear Specimens of High Strength Low Alloy (HSLA) Steels

Fatigue behavior of laser welds in lap-shear specimens of high strength low alloy (HSLA) steels is investigated based on a fatigue crack growth model. Fatigue experiments of laser welded lap-shear specimens were conducted. Analytical global stress intensity factor solutions are developed and compared with finite element computational results. A fatigue crack growth model based on the analytical local stress intensity factor solutions of kinked cracks and the Paris law for crack growth is then adopted to estimate the fatigue lives of the laser welds under cyclic loading conditions. The estimated fatigue lives are compared with the experimental results. The results indicate that the fatigue life predictions based on the fatigue crack growth model are slightly longer than the experimental results.
Technical Paper

Development of a Finite Element Model to Study the Effects of Muscle Forces on Knee-Thigh-Hip Injuries in Frontal Crashes

A finite element (FE) model with knee-thigh-hip (KTH) and lower-extremity muscles has been developed to study the potential effects of muscle tension on KTH injuries due to knee bolster loadings in frontal crashes. This model was created by remeshing the MADYMO human lower-extremity FE model to account for regional differences in cortical bone thickness, trabecular bone, cortical bone with directionally dependent mechanical properties and Tsai-Wu failure criteria, and articular cartilage. The model includes 35 Hill-type muscles in each lower extremity with masses based on muscle volume. The skeletal response of the model was validated by simulating biomechanical tests without muscle tension, including cadaver skeletal segment impact tests documented in the literature as well as recent tests of seated whole cadavers that were impacted using knee-loading conditions similar to those produced in FMVSS 208 testing.
Technical Paper

Influence of Object Properties on Reaching and Grasping Tasks

This paper investigates how reaching and grasping are affected by various object properties and conditions. While previous studies have examined the effect of object attributes such as size, shape, and distance from the subject, there is a need for quantitative models of finger motions. To accomplish this, the experiment was performed with six subjects where the 3D-coordinates of the finger joints and the wrist of one hand were recorded during reaching and grasping tasks. Finger joint angles at final posture were found to depend on both object size and orientation while wrist postures were changed primarily depending on object orientation. Also, each object orientation caused alteration in relative object location with respect to the hand at final posture. In addition, analysis of temporal variables revealed that it took from 1.06 to 1.30 seconds depending on the object distance to start reaching and complete grasping of the object.
Technical Paper

Digital Human Modeling Goals and Strategic Plans

Digital human modeling (DHM) progress worldwide will be much faster and cohesive if the diverse community now developing simulations has a global blueprint for DHM, and is able to work together efficiently. DHM developers and users can save time by building on each other's work. This paper highlights a panel discussion on DHM goals and strategic plans for the next decade to begin formulating the international blueprint. Four subjects are chosen as the starting points: (1) moving DHM into the public safety and internet arenas, (2) role of DHM in computer assisted surgery and automotive safety, (3) DHM in defense applications, and (4) DHM to improve workplace ergonomics.
Technical Paper

Development of an Adaptive Workload Management System using Queueing Network-Model Human Processor (QN-MHP)

The chance of vehicle collisions significantly increases when drivers are overloaded with information from in-vehicle systems. Developing adaptive workload management systems (AWMS) to dynamically control the rate of messages from these in-vehicle systems is one of the solutions to this problem. However, existing AWMSs do not use a model of driver cognitive system to estimate workload and only suppress or redirect in-vehicle system messages, without changing their rate based on driver workload. In this work, we propose a prototype of a new adaptive workload management system (QN-MHP AWMS) and it includes: a queueing network model of driver workload (Wu & Liu, In Press) that estimates driver workload in different driving situations, and a message controller that determines the optimal delay times between messages and dynamically controls the rate of messages presented to drivers.