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Technical Paper

Foot and Ankle Finite Element Modeling Using Ct-Scan Data

Although not life threatening in most cases, victims of lower extremity injuries frequently end up living with a poor quality of life. The implementations of airbag supplement restraint systems significantly reduce the incidence of head and chest injuries. However, the frequency of leg injuries remains high. Several finite element models of the foot and ankle have been developed to further the understanding of this injury mechanism. None of those models employed accurate geometry among various bony segments. The objective of this study is to develop a foot and ankle finite element model based on CT scan data so that joint geometry can be accurately represented. The model was validated against experimental data for several different configurations including typical car crash situations.
Technical Paper

Experimental and Analytical Study of Knee Fracture Mechanisms in a Frontal Knee Impact

The mechanisms of knee fracture were studied experimentally using cadaveric knees and analytically by computer simulation. Ten 90 degree flexed knees were impacted frontally by a 20 kg pendulum with a rigid surface, a 450 psi (3.103 MPa) crush strength and a 100 psi (0.689 MPa) crush strength aluminum honeycomb padding and a 50 psi (0.345 MPa) crush strength paper honeycomb padding at a velocity of about five m/s. During rigid surface impact, a patella fracture and a split condylar fracture were observed. The split condylar fracture was generated by the patella pushing the condyles apart, based on a finite element model using the maximum principal stress as the injury criterion. In the case of the 450 psi aluminum honeycomb padding, the split condylar fracture still occurred, but no patella fractures were observed because the honeycomb provided a more uniform distribution of patella load. No bony fractures in the knee area occurred for impacts with a 50 psi paper honeycomb padding.
Technical Paper

Mathematical Modeling of the Hybrid III Dummy Chest with Chest Foam

A nonlinear foam was added to a previously created three-dimensional finite element model of the Hybrid III dummy chest which consisted of six steel ribs, rib damping material, the sternum, a spine box and a pendulum. Two standard calibration pendulum impact tests for a Hybrid III dummy chest were used to validate the new model. An explicit finite element analysis code PAM-CRASH was utilized to simulate the dynamic process. At impact velocities of 6.7 m/s and 4.3 m/s, the force and deflection time history as well as the force-deflection plots showed good agreement between model predictions and calibration data. Peak strains also agreed well with experimental data.
Technical Paper

Finite Element Modeling of Hybrid III Head-Neck Complex

A three-dimensional finite element model of the Hybrid III dummy head-neck complex was created to simulate the Amended Part 572 Head-Neck Pendulum Compliance Test, of the Code of Federal Regulations. The model consisted of a rigid head and five circular aluminum disks joined together by butyl elastomer rubber. Contact surfaces were defined to allow the anterior neck to separate upon an application of extension moments. Two mounting positions, one for flexion and the other one for extension, were used to simulate the head-neck calibration tests. An explicit finite element code PAM-CRASH was utilized to simulate the model dynamic responses. Simulation results were compared to experimental data obtained from First Technology Safety Systems Inc. Model predictions agreed well in both flexion and extension. This model can be used to study the head-neck biomechanics of the existing dummy as well as in the development of new dummies.
Technical Paper

Reconstruction of Pediatric Occupant Kinematic Responses Using Finite Element Method in a Real-World Lateral Impact

Computational human body models, especially detailed finite element models are suitable for investigation of human body kinematic responses and injury mechanism. A real-world lateral vehicle-tree impact accident was reconstructed by using finite element method according to the accident description in the CIREN database. At first, a baseline vehicle FE model was modified and validated according to the NCAP lateral impact test. The interaction between the car and the tree in the accident was simulated using LS-Dyna software. Parameters that affect the simulation results, such as the initial pre-crash speed, impact direction, and the initial impact location on the vehicle, were analyzed. The parameters were determined by matching the simulated vehicle body deformations and kinematics to the accident reports.
Technical Paper

Development of an FE Model of the Rat Head Subjected to Air Shock Loading

As early as the 1950's, Gurdjian and colleagues (Gurdjian et al., 1955) observed that brain injuries could occur by direct pressure loading without any global head accelerations. This pressure-induced injury mechanism was "forgotten" for some time and is being rekindled due to the many mild traumatic brain injuries attributed to blast overpressure. The aim of the current study was to develop a finite element (FE) model to predict the biomechanical response of rat brain under a shock tube environment. The rat head model, including more than 530,000 hexahedral elements with a typical element size of 100 to 300 microns was developed based on a previous rat brain model for simulating a blunt controlled cortical impact. An FE model, which represents gas flow in a 0.305-m diameter shock tube, was formulated to provide input (incident) blast overpressures to the rat model. It used an Eulerian approach and the predicted pressures were verified with experimental data.
Technical Paper

Experimental Validation of Pediatric Thorax Finite Element Model under Dynamic Loading Condition and Analysis of Injury

Previously, a 10-year-old (YO) pediatric thorax finite element model (FEM) was developed and verified against child chest stiffness data measured from clinical cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). However, the CPR experiments were performed at relatively low speeds, with a maximum loading rate of 250 mm/s. Studies showed that the biomechanical responses of human thorax exhibited rate sensitive characteristics. As such, the studies of dynamic responses of the pediatric thorax FEM are needed. Experimental pediatric cadaver data in frontal pendulum impacts and diagonal belt dynamic loading tests were used for dynamic validation. Thoracic force-deflection curves between test and simulation were compared. Strains predicted by the FEM and the injuries observed in the cadaver tests were also compared for injury assessment and analysis. This study helped to further improve the 10 YO pediatric thorax FEM.
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

Application of a Finite Element Model of the Brain to Study Traumatic Brain Injury Mechanisms in the Rat

Complete validation of any finite element (FE) model of the human brain is very difficult due to the lack of adequate experimental data. However, more animal brain injury data, especially rat data, obtained under well-defined mechanical loading conditions, are available to advance the understanding of the mechanisms of traumatic brain injury. Unfortunately, internal response of the brain in these experimental studies could not be measured. The aim of this study was to develop a detailed FE model of the rat brain for the prediction of intracranial responses due to different impact scenarios. Model results were used to elucidate possible brain injury mechanisms. An FE model, consisting of more than 250,000 hexahedral elements with a typical element size of 100 to 300 microns, was developed to represent the brain of a rat. The model was first validated locally against peak brain deformation data obtained from nine unique dynamic cortical deformation (vacuum) tests.
Technical Paper

Development of Numerical Models for Injury Biomechanics Research: A Review of 50 Years of Publications in the Stapp Car Crash Conference

Numerical analyses frequently accompany experimental investigations that study injury biomechanics and improvements in automotive safety. Limited by computational speed, earlier mathematical models tended to simplify the system under study so that a set of differential equations could be written and solved. Advances in computing technology and analysis software have enabled the development of many sophisticated models that have the potential to provide a more comprehensive understanding of human impact response, injury mechanisms, and tolerance. In this article, 50 years of publications on numerical modeling published in the Stapp Car Crash Conference Proceedings and Journal were reviewed. These models were based on: (a) author-developed equations and software, (b) public and commercially available programs to solve rigid body dynamic models (such as MVMA2D, CAL3D or ATB, and MADYMO), and (c) finite element models.
Technical Paper

Development of a Three-Dimensional Finite Element Chest Model for the 5th Percentile Female

Several three-dimensional (3D) finite element (FE) models of the human body have been developed to elucidate injury mechanisms due to automotive crashes. However, these models are mainly focused on 50th percentile male. As a first step towards a better understanding of injury biomechanics in the small female, a 3D FE model of a 5th percentile female human chest (FEM-5F) has been developed and validated against experimental data obtained from two sets of frontal impact, one set of lateral impact, two sets of oblique impact and a series of ballistic impacts. Two previous FE models, a small female Total HUman Model for Safety (THUMS-AF05) occupant version 1.0ϐ (Kimpara et al., 2002) and the Wayne State University Human Thoracic Model (WSUHTM, Wang 1995 and Shah et al., 2001) were integrated and modified for this model development.
Technical Paper

Numerical Investigations of Interactions between the Knee-Thigh-Hip Complex with Vehicle Interior Structures

Although biomechanical studies on the knee-thigh-hip (KTH) complex have been extensive, interactions between the KTH and various vehicular interior design parameters in frontal automotive crashes for newer models have not been reported in the open literature to the best of our knowledge. A 3D finite element (FE) model of a 50th percentile male KTH complex, which includes explicit representations of the iliac wing, acetabulum, pubic rami, sacrum, articular cartilage, femoral head, femoral neck, femoral condyles, patella, and patella tendon, has been developed to simulate injuries such as fracture of the patella, femoral neck, acetabulum, and pubic rami of the KTH complex. Model results compared favorably against regional component test data including a three-point bending test of the femur, axial loading of the isolated knee-patella, axial loading of the KTH complex, axial loading of the femoral head, and lateral loading of the isolated pelvis.
Technical Paper

Development of a Computer Model to Predict Aortic Rupture Due to Impact Loading

Aortic injuries during blunt thoracic impacts can lead to life threatening hemorrhagic shock and potential exsanguination. Experimental approaches designed to study the mechanism of aortic rupture such as the testing of cadavers is not only expensive and time consuming, but has also been relatively unsuccessful. The objective of this study was to develop a computer model and to use it to predict modes of loading that are most likely to produce aortic ruptures. Previously, a 3D finite element model of the human thorax was developed and validated against data obtained from lateral pendulum tests. The model included a detailed description of the heart, lungs, rib cage, sternum, spine, diaphragm, major blood vessels and intercostal muscles. However, the aorta was modeled as a hollow tube using shell elements with no fluid within, and its material properties were assumed to be linear and isotropic.
Technical Paper

The Influence of Surrogate Blood Vessels on the Impact Response of a Physical Model of the Brain

Cerebral blood vessels are an integral part of the brain and may play a role in the response of the brain to impact. The purpose of this study was to quantify the effects of surrogate vessels on the deformation patterns of a physical model of the brain under various impact conditions. Silicone gel and tubing were used as surrogates for brain tissue and blood vessels, respectively. Two aluminum cylinders representing a coronal section of the brain were constructed. One cylinder was filled with silicone gel only, and the other was filled with silicone gel and silicone tubing arranged in the radial direction in the peripheral region. An array of markers was embedded in the gel in both cylinders to facilitate strain calculation via high-speed video analysis. Both cylinders were simultaneously subjected to a combination of linear and angular acceleration using a two-segment pendulum.
Technical Paper

Lower Limb: Advanced FE Model and New Experimental Data

The Lower Limb Model for Safety (LLMS) is a finite element model of the lower limb developed mainly for safety applications. It is based on a detailed description of the lower limb anatomy derived from CT and MRI scans collected on a subject close to a 50th percentile male. The main anatomical structures from ankle to hip (excluding the hip) were all modeled with deformable elements. The modeling of the foot and ankle region was based on a previous model Beillas et al. (1999) that has been modified. The global validation of the LLMS focused on the response of the isolated lower leg to axial loading, the response of the isolated knee to frontal and lateral impact, and the interaction of the whole model with a Hybrid III model in a sled environment, for a total of nine different set-ups. In order to better characterize the axial behavior of the lower leg, experiments conducted on cadaveric tibia and foot were reanalyzed and experimental corridors were proposed.
Technical Paper

Mechanical Characterization of Porcine Abdominal Organs

Typical automotive related abdominal injuries occur due to contact with the rim of the steering wheel, seatbelt and armrest, however, the rate is less than in other body regions. When solid abdominal organs, such as the liver, kidneys and spleen are involved, the injury severity tends to be higher. Although sled and pendulum impact tests have been conducted using cadavers and animals, the mechanical properties and the tissue level injury tolerance of abdominal solid organs are not well characterized. These data are needed in the development of computer models, the improvement of current anthropometric test devices and the enhancement of our understanding of abdominal injury mechanisms. In this study, a series of experimental tests on solid abdominal organs was conducted using porcine liver, kidney and spleen specimens. Additionally, the injury tolerance of the solid organs was deduced from the experimental data.
Technical Paper

Computational Study of the Contribution of the Vasculature on the Dynamic Response of the Brain

Brain tissue architecture consists of a complex network of neurons and vasculature interspersed within a matrix of supporting cells. The role of the relatively suffer blood vessels on the more compliant brain tissues during rapid loading has not been properly investigated. Two 2-D finite element models of the human head were developed. The basic model (Model I) consisted of the skull, dura matter, cerebral spinal fluid (CSF), tentorium, brain tissue and the parasagittal bridging veins. The pia mater was also included but in a simplified form which does not correspond to the convolutions of the brain. In Model II, major branches of the cerebral arteries were added to Model I. Material properties for the brain tissues and vasculature were taken from those reported in the literature. The model was first validated against intracranial pressure and brain/skull relative motion data from cadaveric tests.
Journal Article

Finite Element Investigation of Seatbelt Systems for Improving Occupant Protection during Rollover Crashes

The seatbelt system, originally designed for protecting occupants in frontal crashes, has been reported to be inadequate for preventing occupant head-to-roof contact during rollover crashes. To improve the effectiveness of seatbelt systems in rollovers, in this study, we reviewed previous literature and proposed vertical head excursion corridors during static inversion and dynamic rolling tests for human and Hybrid III dummy. Finite element models of a human and a dummy were integrated with restraint system models and validated against the proposed test corridors. Simulations were then conducted to investigate the effects of varying design factors for a three-point seatbelt on vertical head excursions of the occupant during rollovers. It was found that there were two contributing parts of vertical head excursions during dynamic rolling conditions.
Technical Paper

Testing and Modeling the Responses of Hybrid III Crash-Dummy Lower Extremity under High-speed Vertical Loading

Anthropometric test devices (ATDs), such as the Hybrid III crash-test dummy, have been used to simulate lower-extremity responses to military personnel subjected to loading conditions from anti-vehicular (AV) landmine blasts. Numerical simulations [e.g., finite element (FE) analysis] of such high-speed vertical loading on ATD parts require accurate material parameters that are dependent on strain rate. This study presents a combined experimental and computational study to calibrate the rate-dependent properties of three materials on the lower extremities of the Hybrid III dummy. The three materials are heel-pad foam, foot skin, and lower-leg flesh, and each has properties that can affect simulation results of forces and moments transferred to the lower extremities.