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Technical Paper

Methods for Measuring and Representing Automobile Occupant Posture

1999-03-01
1999-01-0959
Many vehicle design and safety assessment applications use physical and virtual representations of vehicle occupants within the vehicle interior. Proper use of these human models requires accurate data concerning vehicle occupant posture and position. This paper presents techniques for characterizing vehicle occupant posture by measuring accessible body landmarks. The landmark locations are used to estimate joint locations that define a kinematic linkage representation of the human body. The resulting posture analysis techniques provide a unified method of measuring and reporting vehicle occupant postures that is suitable for use with both physical and virtual human models.
Technical Paper

Investigating Driver Headroom Perception: Methods and Models

1999-03-01
1999-01-0893
Recent changes in impact protection requirements have led to increased padding on vehicle interior surfaces. In the areas near the driver's head, thicker padding can reduce the available headspace and may degrade the driver's perception of headroom. A laboratory study of driver headroom perception was conducted to investigate the effects of physical headroom on the subjective evaluation of headroom. Ninety-nine men and women rated a range of headroom conditions in a reconfigurable vehicle mockup. Unexpectedly, driver stature was not closely related to the perception of headroom. Short-statured drivers were as likely as tall drivers to rate a low roof condition as unacceptable. Statistical models were developed from the data to predict the effects of changes in headroom on the percentage of drivers rating the head-room at a specified criterion level.
Technical Paper

New Concepts in Vehicle Interior Design Using ASPECT

1999-03-01
1999-01-0967
The ASPECT (Automotive Seat and Package Evaluation and Comparison Tools) program developed a new physical manikin for seat measurement and new techniques for integrating the seat measurements into the vehicle design process. This paper presents an overview of new concepts in vehicle interior design that have resulted from the ASPECT program and other studies of vehicle occupant posture and position conducted at UMTRI. The new methods result from an integration of revised versions of the SAE seat position and eyellipse models with the new tools developed in ASPECT. Measures of seat and vehicle interior geometry are input to statistical posture and position prediction tools that can be applied to any specified user population or individual occupant anthropometry.
Technical Paper

Automobile Occupant Posture Prediction for Use with Human Models

1999-03-01
1999-01-0966
A new method of predicting automobile occupant posture is presented. The Cascade Prediction Model approach combines multiple independent predictions of key postural degrees of freedom with inverse kinematics guided by data-based heuristics. The new model, based on posture data collected in laboratory mockups and validated using data from actual vehicles, produces accurate posture predictions for a wide range of passenger car interior geometries. Inputs to the model include vehicle package dimensions, seat characteristics, and occupant anthropometry. The Cascade Prediction Model was developed to provide accurate posture prediction for use with any human CAD model, and is applicable to many vehicle design and safety assessment applications.
Technical Paper

ASPECT Manikin Applications and Measurements for Design, Audit, and Benchmarking

1999-03-01
1999-01-0965
The ASPECT (Automotive Seat and Package Evaluation and Comparison Tools) manikin provides new capabilities for vehicle and seat measurement while maintaining continuity with previous practices. This paper describes how the manikin is used in the development of new designs, the audit verification of build, and in benchmarking competitive vehicles and seats. The measurement procedures are discussed in detail, along with the seat and package dimensions that are associated with the new tool.
Technical Paper

Design and Development of the ASPECT Manikin

1999-03-01
1999-01-0963
The primary objective of the ASPECT (Automotive Seat and Package Evaluation and Comparison Tools) program was to develop a new generation of the SAE J826 H-point manikin. The new ASPECT manikin builds on the long-term success of the H-point manikin while adding new measurement capability and improved ease of use. The ASPECT manikin features an articulated torso linkage to measure lumbar support prominence; new contours based on human subject data; a new weighting scheme; lightweight, supplemental thigh, leg, and shoe segments; and a simpler, user-friendly installation procedure. This paper describes the new manikin in detail, including the rationale and motivation for the design features. The ASPECT manikin maintains continuity with the current SAE J826 H-point manikin in important areas while providing substantial new measurement capability.
Technical Paper

ASPECT: The Next-Generation H-Point Machine and Related Vehicle and Seat Design and Measurement Tools

1999-03-01
1999-01-0962
The ASPECT program was conducted to develop new Automotive Seat and Package Evaluation and Comparison Tools. This paper presents a summary of the objectives, methods, and results of the program. The primary goal of ASPECT was to create a new generation of the SAE J826 H-point machine. The new ASPECT manikin has an articulated torso linkage, revised seat contact contours, a new weighting scheme, and a simpler, more user-friendly installation procedure. The ASPECT manikin simultaneously measures the H-point location, seat cushion angle, seatback angle, and lumbar support prominence of a seat, and can be used to make measures of seat stiffness. In addition to the physical manikin, the ASPECT program developed new tools for computer-aided design (CAD) of vehicle interiors. The postures and positions of hundreds of vehicle occupants with a wide range of body size were measured in many different vehicle conditions.
Technical Paper

Human Subject Testing in Support of ASPECT

1999-03-01
1999-01-0960
The ASPECT program, conducted to develop new Automotive Seat and Package Evaluation and Comparison Tools, used posture and position data from hundreds of vehicle occupants to develop a new physical manikin and related tools. Analysis of the relationships between anthropometric measures established the criteria for subject selection. The study goals and the characteristics of the data collected determined the sampling approach and number of subjects tested in each study. Testing was conducted in both vehicle and laboratory vehicle mockups. This paper describes the subject sampling strategies, anthropometric issues, and general data collection methods used for the program's eight posture studies.
Technical Paper

Methods for Laboratory Investigation of Airbag-Induced Thermal Skin Burns

1999-03-01
1999-01-1064
Two new techniques for investigating the thermal skin-burn potential of airbags are presented. A reduced-volume airbag test procedure has been developed to obtain airbag pressures that are representative of a dynamic ridedown event during a static deployment. Temperature and heat flux measurements made with this procedure can be used to predict airbag thermal burn potential. Measurements from the reduced-volume procedure are complemented by data obtained using two gas-jet simulators, called heatguns. Gas is vented in controlled bursts from a large, heated, pressurized tank of gas onto a target surface. Heat flux measurements on the target surface have been used to develop quantitative models of the relationships between gas jet characteristics and burn potential.
Technical Paper

Development of an Improved Airbag-Induced Thermal Skin Burn Model

1999-03-01
1999-01-1065
The UMTRI Airbag Skin Burn Model has been improved through laboratory testing and the implementation of a more flexible heat transfer model. A new impinging jet module based on laboratory measurements of heat flux due to high-velocity gas jets has been added, along with an implicit finite-difference skin conduction module. The new model can be used with airbag gas dynamics simulation outputs, or with heat flux data measured in the laboratory, to predict the potential for thermal skin burn due to exposure to airbag exhaust gas.
Technical Paper

Development of Surrogate Child Restraints for Testing Occupant Sensing and Classification Systems

2004-03-08
2004-01-0843
This paper describes the design and development of a family of surrogate child restraints that are intended for use in developing and testing occupant sensing and classification systems. Detailed measurements were made of the geometry and mass distribution characteristics of 34 commercial child restraints, including infant restraints, convertibles, combination restraints, and boosters. The restraints were installed in three test seats with appropriately sized crash dummies to obtain data on seat-surface pressure patterns and the position and orientation of the restraint with belt loading. The data were used to construct two surrogates with removable components. The convertible surrogate can be used to represent a rear-facing infant restraint with or without a base, a rear-facing convertible, or a forward-facing convertible. The booster surrogate can represent a high-back belt-positioning booster, a backless booster, or a forward-facing-only restraint with a five-point harness.
Technical Paper

Balance Maintenance during Seated Reaches of People with Spinal Cord Injury

2004-06-15
2004-01-2138
In many task analyses using digital human figure models, only the terminal or apparently most stressful posture is analyzed. For reaches from a seated position, this is generally the posture with the hand or hands at the target. However, depending on the characteristics of the tasks and the people performing them, analyzing only the terminal posture could be misleading. This possibility was examined using data from a study of the reaching behavior of people with spinal cord injury. Participants performed two-handed forward reaching tasks. These reaches were to three targets located in the sagittal plane. The terminal postures did not differ significantly between those with spinal cord injury and those without. However, motion analysis demonstrated that they employed distinct strategies, particularly in the initial phase of motion.
Technical Paper

Torso Kinematics in Seated Reaches

2004-06-15
2004-01-2176
Simulations of humans performing seated reaches require accurate descriptions of the movements of the body segments that make up the torso. Data to generate such simulations were obtained in a laboratory study using industrial, auto, and truck seats. Twelve men and women reached to push-button targets located throughout their right-hand reach envelopes as their movements were recorded using an electromagnetic tracking system. The data illustrate complex patterns of motion that depend on target location and shoulder range of motion. Pelvis motion contributes substantially to seated reach capability. On padded seats, the effective center of rotation of the pelvis is often within the seat cushion below the pelvis rather than at the hips. Lumbar spine motions differ markedly depending on the location of the target. A categorization of reach targets into four zones differentiated by torso kinematics is proposed.
Technical Paper

Effects of Hip Posture on the Frontal Impact Tolerance of the Human Hip Joint

2003-10-27
2003-22-0002
… The pattern of left- and right-side hip injuries to front-seat occupants involved in offset and angled frontal crashes suggests that hip posture (i.e., the orientation of the femur relative to the pelvis) affects the fracture/dislocation tolerance of the hip joint to forces transmitted along the femur during knee-to-knee-bolster loading in frontal impacts. To investigate this hypothesis, dynamic hip tolerance tests were conducted on the left and right hips of 22 unembalmed cadavers. In these tests, the knee was dynamically loaded in the direction of the long axis of the femur and the pelvis was fixed to minimize inertial effects. Thirty-five successful hip tolerance tests were conducted. Twenty-five of these tests were performed with the hip oriented in a typical posture for a seated driver, or neutral posture, to provide a baseline measure of hip tolerance. The effects of hip posture on hip tolerance were quantified using a paired-comparison experimental design.
Technical Paper

Redesigning Workstations Utilizing Motion Modification Algorithm

2003-06-17
2003-01-2195
Workstation design is one of the most essential components of proactive ergonomics, and digital human models have gained increasing popularity in the analysis and design of current and future workstations (Chaffin 2001). Using digital human technology, it is possible to simulate interactions between humans and current or planned workstations, and conduct quantitative ergonomic analyses based on realistic human postures and motions. Motion capture has served as the primary means by which to acquire and visualize human motions in a digital environment. However, motion capture only provides motions for a specific person performing specific tasks. Albeit useful, at best this allows for the analysis of current or mocked-up workstations only. The ability to subsequently modify these motions is required to efficiently evaluate alternative design possibilities and thus improve design layouts.
Technical Paper

Assessing the Validity of Kinematically Generated Reach Envelopes for Simulations of Vehicle Operators

2003-06-17
2003-01-2216
Assessments of reach capability using human figure models are commonly performed by exercising each joint of a kinematic chain, terminating in the hand, through the associated ranges of motion. The result is a reach envelope determined entirely by the segment lengths, joint degrees of freedom, and joint ranges of motion. In this paper, the validity of this approach is assessed by comparing the reach envelopes obtained by this method to those obtained in a laboratory study of men and women. Figures were created in the Jack human modeling software to represent the kinematic linkages of participants in the laboratory study. Maximum reach was predicted using the software's kinematic reach-envelope generation methods and by interactive manipulation. Predictions were compared to maximum reach envelopes obtained experimentally. The findings indicate that several changes to the normal procedures for obtaining maximum reach envelopes for seated tasks are needed.
Technical Paper

Geometric Visibility of Mirror Mounted Turn Signals

2005-04-11
2005-01-0449
Turn signals mounted on exterior rearview mirrors are increasingly being used as original equipment on passenger cars and light trucks. The potential for mirror-mounted turn signals (MMTS) to improve the geometric visibility of turn signals is examined in this paper. A survey of U.S. and UN-ECE regulations showed that the turn signals of a vehicle that is minimally compliant with U.S. regulations are not visible to a driver of a nearby vehicle in an adjacent lane. Measurements of mirror location and window geometry were made on 74 passenger cars and light trucks, including 38 vehicles with fender-mounted turn signals (FMTS). These data were combined with data on driver eye locations from two previous studies to assess the relative visibility of MMTS and conventional signals. Simulations were conducted to examine the potential for signals to be obstructed when a driver looks laterally through the passenger-side window.
Technical Paper

Cervical Spine Geometry in the Automotive Seated Posture: Variations with Age, Stature, and Gender

2004-11-01
2004-22-0014
In the mid 1970s, UMTRI investigated the biomechanical properties of the head and neck using 180 “normal” adult subjects selected to fill eighteen subject groups based on age (young, mid-aged, older), gender, and stature (short, medium, and tall by gender). Lateral-view radiographs of the subjects’ cervical spines and heads were taken with the subjects seated in a simulated automotive neutral posture, as well as with their necks in full-voluntary flexion and full-voluntary extension. Although the cervical spine and lower head geometry were previously measured manually and documented, new technologies have enabled computer digitization of the scanned x-ray images and a more comprehensive and detailed analysis of the variation in cervical spine and lower head geometry with subject age, stature, and gender. After scanning the radiographic images, 108 skeletal landmarks on the cervical vertebrae and 10 head landmarks were digitized.
Technical Paper

Predicting Foot Positions for Manual Materials Handling Tasks

2005-06-14
2005-01-2681
For many industrial tasks (push, pull, lift, carry, etc.), restrictions on grip locations and visibility constrain the hand and head positions and help to define feasible postures. In contrast, foot locations are often minimally constrained and an ergonomics analyst can choose several different stances in selecting a posture to analyze. Also, because stance can be a critical determinant of a biomechanical assessment of the work posture, the lack of a valid method for placing the feet of a manikin with respect to the task compromises the accuracy of the analysis. To address this issue, foot locations and orientations were captured in a laboratory study of sagittal plane and asymmetric manual load transfers. A pilot study with four volunteers of varying anthropometry approached a load located on one of three shelves and transferred the load to one of six shelves.
Technical Paper

Application of Digital Human Modeling to the Design of a Postal Delivery Vehicle

2005-06-14
2005-01-2675
The development of a new carrier route vehicle for the U.S. Postal Service began with the design of the vehicle interior from an operator-centered perspective. A task analysis of the postal worker while driving and while performing mail-handling operations guided the layout of the vehicle interior. The Jack™ human modeling software was used, along with SAE Recommended Practices and other tools, to create a vehicle environment that will accommodate a large percentage of the operator population. The challenges of designing for this unique work environment provided a good opportunity to evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of the available human factors tools, including the Jack™ digital human figure model. This paper describes the development of the vehicle interior, discusses some lessons learned, and concludes with recommendations for increased functionality and improved integration of vehicle interior design tools.
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