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Technical Paper

Kinematics of the Thoracoabdominal Contents Under Various Loading Scenarios

High-speed biplane x-ray was used to investigate relative kinematics of the thoracoabdominal organs in response to blunt loading. Four post-mortem human surrogates instrumented with radiopaque markers were subjected to eight crash-specific loading scenarios, including frontal chest and abdominal impacts, as well as driver-shoulder seatbelt loading. Testing was conducted with each surrogate perfused, ventilated, and positioned in an inverted, fixed-back configuration. Displacement of radiopaque markers recorded with high-speed x-ray in two perspectives was tracked using motion analysis software and projected into calibrated three-dimensional coordinates. Internal organ kinematics in response to blunt impact were quantified for the pericardium, lungs, diaphragm, liver, spleen, stomach, mesentery, and bony structures.
Technical Paper

A Study of the Response of the Human Cadaver Head to Impact

High-speed biplane x-ray and neutral density targets were used to examine brain displacement and deformation during impact. Relative motion, maximum principal strain, maximum shear strain, and intracranial pressure were measured in thirty-five impacts using eight human cadaver head and neck specimens. The effect of a helmet was evaluated. During impact, local brain tissue tends to keep its position and shape with respect to the inertial frame, resulting in relative motion between the brain and skull and deformation of the brain. The local brain motions tend to follow looping patterns. Similar patterns are observed for impact in different planes, with some degree of posterior-anterior and right-left symmetry. Peak coup pressure and pressure rate increase with increasing linear acceleration, but coup pressure pulse duration decreases. Peak average maximum principal strain and maximum shear are on the order of 0.09 for CFC 60 Hz data for these tests.
Technical Paper

Interactions of Out-of-Position Small-Female Surrogates with a Depowered Driver Airbag

The objectives of this study were to examine the response, repeatability, and injury predictive ability of the Hybrid III small-female dummy to static out-of-position (OOP) deployments using a depowered driver-side airbag. Five dummy tests were conducted in two OOP configurations by two different laboratories. The OOP configurations were nose-on-rim (NOR) and chest-on-bag (COB). Four cadaver tests were conducted using unembalmed small-female cadavers and the same airbags used in the dummy tests under similar OOP conditions. One cadaver test was designed to increase airbag loading of the face and neck (a forehead-on-rim, or FOR test). Comparison between the dummy tests of Lab 1 and of Lab 2 indicated the test conditions and results were repeatable. In the cadaver tests no skull fractures or neck injuries occurred. However, all four cadavers had multiple rib fractures.
Technical Paper

Investigation of Upper Body and Cervical Spine Kinematics of Post Mortem Human Subjects (PMHS) during Low-Speed, Rear-End Impacts

A total of eight low-speed, rear-end impact tests using two Post Mortem Human Subjects (PMHS) in a seated posture are reported. These tests were conducted using a HYGE-style mini-sled. Two test conditions were employed: 8 kph without a headrestraint or 16 kph with a headrestraint. Upper-body kinematics were captured for each test using a combination of transducers and high-speed video. A 3-2-2-2-accelerometer package was used to measure the generalized 3D kinematics of both the head and pelvis. An angular rate sensor and two single-axis linear accelerometers were used to measure angular speed, angular acceleration, and linear acceleration of T1 in the sagittal plane. Two high-speed video cameras were used to track targets rigidly attached to the head, T1, and pelvis. The cervical spine kinematics were captured with a high-speed, biplane x-ray system by tracking radiopaque markers implanted into each cervical vertebra.
Technical Paper

Brain/Skull Relative Displacement Magnitude Due to Blunt Head Impact: New Experimental Data and Model

Relative motion between the brain and skull may explain many types of brain injury such as intracerebral hematomas due to bridging veins rupture [1] and cerebral contusions. However, no experimental methods have been developed to measure the magnitude of this motion. Consequently, relative motion between the brain and skull predicted by analytical tools has never been validated. In this study, radio opaque markers were placed in the skull and neutral density markers were placed in the brain in two vertical columns in the occipitoparietal and temporoparietal regions. A bi-planar, high-speed x-ray system was used to track the motion of these markers. Due to limitations in current technology to record the x-ray image on high-speed video cameras, only low- speed (﹤ 4m/s) impact data were available.
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

Biomechanical Investigation of Airbag-Induced Upper-Extremity Injuries

The factors that influence airbag-induced upper-extremity injuries sustained by drivers were investigated in this study. Seven unembalmed human cadavers were used in nineteen direct-forearm-interaction static deployments. A single horizontal-tear-seam airbag module and two different inflators were used. Spacing between the instrumented forearm and the airbag module was varied from 10 cm to direct contact in some tests. Forearm-bone instrumentation included triaxial accelerometry, crack detection gages, and film targets. Internal airbag pressure was also measured. The observed injuries were largely transverse, oblique, and wedge fractures of the ulna or radius, or both, similar to those reported in field investigations. Tears of the elbow joint capsule were also found, both with and without fracture of the forearm.
Technical Paper

Advanced Human Modeling for Injury Biomechanics Research

The two main motivations for Wayne State University (WSU) and Henry Ford Hospital (HFH) researchers to develop numerical human surrogates are advanced computing technology and a high-speed x-ray imaging device not available just a decade ago. This paper summarizes the capabilities and limitations of detailed component models of the human body, from head to foot, developed at WSU over the last decade (Zhang et al. 2001, Yang et al. 1998, Shah et al. 2001, Iwamoto et al. 2000, Lee et al. 2001 and Beillas et al. 2001). All of these models were validated against global response data obtained from relevant high-speed cadaveric tests. Additionally, some models were also validated against local kinematics of bones or soft tissues obtained using the high-speed x-ray system. All of these models have been scaled to conform to the key dimensions of a 50th percentile male.
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.
Technical Paper

Correlation of an FE Model of the Human Head with Local Brain Motion-Consequences for Injury Prediction

A parameterized, or scalable, finite element (FE) model of the human head was developed and validated against the available cadaver experiment data for three impact directions (frontal, occipital and lateral). The brain material properties were modeled using a hyperelastic and viscoelastic constitutive law. The interface between the skull and the brain was modeled in three different ways ranging from purely tied (no-slip) to sliding (free-slip). Two sliding contact definitions were compared with the tied condition. Also, three different stiffness parameters, encompassing the range of published brain tissue properties, were tested. The model using the tied contact definition correlated well with the experimental results for the coup and contrecoup pressures in a frontal impact while the sliding interface models did not. Relative motion between the skull and the brain in low-severity impacts appears to be relatively insensitive to the contact definitions.
Technical Paper

Abdominal Impact Response to Rigid-Bar, Seatbelt, and Airbag Loading

This study was conducted to resolve discrepancies and fill in gaps in the biomechanical impact response of the human abdomen to frontal impact loading. Three types of abdominal loading were studied: rigid-bar impacts, seatbelt loading, and close-proximity (out-of-position) airbag deployments. Eleven rigid-bar free-back tests were performed into the mid and upper abdomens of unembalmed instrumented human cadavers using nominal impact speeds of 6 and 9 m/s. Seven fixed-back rigid-bar tests were also conducted at 3, 6, and 9 m/s using one cadaver to examine the effects of body mass, spinal flexion, and repeated testing. Load-penetration corridors were developed and compared to those previously established by other researchers. Six seatbelt tests were conducted using three cadavers and a peak-loading rate of 3 m/s. The seatbelt loading tests were designed to maximize belt/abdomen interaction and were not necessarily representative of real-world crashes.
Technical Paper

Investigation of Head Injury Mechanisms Using Neutral Density Technology and High-Speed Biplanar X-ray

The principal focus of this study was the measurement of relative brain motion with respect to the skull using a high-speed, biplanar x-ray system and neutral density targets (NDTs). A suspension fixture was used for testing of inverted, perfused, human cadaver heads. Each specimen was subjected to multiple tests, either struck at rest using a 152-mm-diameter padded impactor face, or stopped against an angled surface from steady-state motion. The impacts were to the frontal and occipital regions. An array of multiple NDTs was implanted in a double-column scheme of 5 and 6 targets, with 10 mm between targets in each column and 80 mm between columns. These columns were implanted in the temporoparietal and occipitoparietal regions. The impacts produced peak resultant accelerations of 10 to 150 g, and peak angular accelerations between 1000 and 8000 rad/s2. For all but one test, the peak angular speeds ranged from 17 to 22 rad/s.
Technical Paper

Recent Advances in Brain Injury Research: A New Human Head Model Development and Validation

Many finite element models have been developed by several research groups in order to achieve a better understanding of brain injury. Due to the lack of experimental data, validation of these models has generally been limited. Consequently, applying these models to investigate brain responses has also been limited. Over the last several years, several versions of the Wayne State University brain injury model (WSUBIM) were developed. However, none of these models is capable of simulating indirect impacts with an angular acceleration higher than 8,000 rad/s2. Additionally, the density and quality of the mesh in the regions of interest are not detailed and sensitive enough to accurately predict the stress/strain level associated with a wide range of impact severities. In this study, WSUBIM version 2001, capable of simulating direct and indirect impacts with a combined translational and rotational acceleration of the head up to 200 g and 12,000 rad/s2 has been developed.
Technical Paper

Prediction of Airbag-Induced Forearm Fractures and Airbag Aggressivity

This study continued the biomechanical investigations of forearm fractures caused by direct loading of steering-wheel airbags during the early stages of deployment. Twenty-four static deployments of driver airbags were conducted into the forearms of unembalmed whole cadavers using a range of airbags, including airbags that are depowered as allowed by the new federal requirements for frontal impact testing. In general, the depowered airbags showed a reduction in incidence and severity of forearm fractures compared to the pre-depowered airbags tested. Data from these twenty-four tests were combined with results from previous studies to develop a refined empirical model for fracture occurrence based on Average Distal Forearm Speed (ADFS), and a revised value for fifty-percent probability of forearm-bone fracture of 10.5 m/s. Bone mineral content, which is directly related to forearm tolerance, was found to be linearly related to arm mass.
Technical Paper

Evaluation of the Kinematic Responses and Potential Injury Mechanisms of the Jejunum during Seatbelt Loading

High-speed biplane x-ray was used to research the kinematics of the small intestine in response to seatbelt loading. Six driver-side 3-point seatbelt simulations were conducted with the lap belt routed superior to the pelvis of six unembalmed human cadavers. Testing was conducted with each cadaver perfused, ventilated, and positioned in a fixed-back configuration with the spine angled 30° from the vertical axis. Four tests were conducted with the cadavers in an inverted position, and two tests were conducted with the cadavers upright. The jejunum was instrumented with radiopaque markers using a minimally-invasive, intraluminal approach without inducing preparation-related damage to the small intestine. Tests were conducted at a target peak lap belt speed of 3 m/s, resulting in peak lap belt loads ranging from 5.4-7.9 kN. Displacement of the radiopaque markers was recorded using high-speed x-ray from two perspectives.
Technical Paper

Comparison of ATD to PMHS Response in the Under-Body Blast Environment

A blast buck (Accelerative Loading Fixture, or ALF) was developed for studying underbody blast events in a laboratory-like setting. It was designed to provide a high-magnitude, high-rate, vertical loading environment for cadaver and dummy testing. It consists of a platform with a reinforcing cage that supports adjustable-height rigid seats for two crew positions. The platform has a heavy frame with a deformable floor insert. Fourteen tests were conducted using fourteen PMHS (post mortem human surrogates) and the Hybrid III ATD (Anthropomorphic Test Device). Tests were conducted at two charge levels: enhanced and mild. The surrogates were tested with and without PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), and in two different postures: nominal (knee angle of 90°) and obtuse (knee angle of 120°). The ALF reproduces damage in the PMHS commensurate with injuries experienced in theater, with the most common damage being to the pelvis and ankle.
Technical Paper

Development of an Advanced ATD Thorax System for Improved Injury Assessment in Frontal Crash Environments

Injuries to the thorax and abdomen comprise a significant percentage of all occupant injuries in motor vehicle accidents. While the percentage of internal chest injuries is reduced for restrained front-seat occupants in frontal crashes, serious skeletal chest injuries and abdominal injuries can still result from interaction with steering wheels and restraint systems. This paper describes the design and performance of prototype components for the chest, abdomen, spine, and shoulders of the Hybrid III dummy that are under development to improve the capability of the Hybrid III frontal crash dummy with regard to restraint-system interaction and injury-sensing capability.
Technical Paper

A Reanalysis of Experimental Brain Strain Data: Implication for Finite Element Head Model Validation

Relative motion between the brain and skull and brain deformation are biomechanics aspects associated with many types of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Thus far, there is only one experimental endeavor (Hardy et al., 2007) reported brain strain under loading conditions commensurate with levels that were capable of producing injury. Most of the existing finite element (FE) head models are validated against brain-skull relative motion and then used for TBI prediction based on strain metrics. However, the suitability of using a model validated against brain-skull relative motion for strain prediction remains to be determined. To partially address the deficiency of experimental brain deformation data, this study revisits the only existing dynamic experimental brain strain data and updates the original calculations, which reflect incremental strain changes. The brain strain is recomputed by imposing the measured motion of neutral density target (NDT) to the NDT triad model.
Technical Paper

Kinematics Response of the PMHS Brain to Rotational Loading of the Head: Development of Experimental Methods and Analysis of Preliminary Data

Experimentally derived brain response envelopes are needed to evaluate and validate existing finite element (FE) head models. Motion of the brain relative to the skull during rotational input was measured using high-speed biplane x-ray. To generate repeatable, reproducible, and scalable data, methods were developed to reduce experimental variance. An “extreme-energy” device was developed to provide a controlled input that is unaffected by specimen characteristics. Additionally, a stereotactic frame was used to deploy radiopaque markers at specific, pre-determined locations within the brain. One post-mortem human surrogate (PMHS) head specimen was subjected to repeat tests of a half-sine rotational speed pulse in the sagittal plane. The desired pulse had a peak angular speed of 40 rad/s and duration of 30 ms. Relative motion of the brain was quantified using radiopaque targets and high-speed biplane x-ray. Frontal and occipital intracranial pressure (ICP) were also measured.
Technical Paper

Brain Strain from Motion of Sparse Markers

Brain strain secondary to head impact or inertial loading is closely associated with pathologic observations in the brain. The only experimental brain strain dataset under loadings close to traumatic levels was calculated by imposing the experimentally measured motion of markers embedded in the brain to an auxiliary model formed by triad elements (Hardy et al., 2007). However, fidelity of the calculated strain as well as the suitability of using triad elements for three-dimensional (3D) strain estimation remains to be verified. Therefore, this study proposes to use tetrahedron elements as a new approach to estimate the brain strain. Fidelity of this newly-proposed approach along with the previous triad-based approach is evaluated with the aid of three independently-developed finite element (FE) head models by numerically replicating the experimental impacts and strain estimation procedures.