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Technical Paper

A Centrifuge Concept for Measuring the Rollover Threshold of Light-Duty Vehicles

Various means for measuring a vehicle's roll stability performance are considered in terms of the pertinence of their test conditions to the rollover crash record, the practicality and quality of the measurement, and their ability to span the performance range of the population of light-duty vehicles. Classical static measures as well as the so-called “maneuver-type” tests that have been under extensive study by the U.S. Dept. of Transportation are specifically addressed. In light of limitations facing the existing methods, the concept of a centrifuge test device is introduced and discussed. The apparatus is comprised of a relatively large machine that mounts a full-sized vehicle tangent to the rotation of a radial arm which revolves at a controlled angular rate. The minimum steady speed of rotation that induces a rollover response in the mounted vehicle corresponds to the static rollover threshold, in units of lateral (or centripetal) acceleration.
Technical Paper

A Laboratory Technique for Assessing the Skin Abrasion Potential of Airbags

In recent investigations of airbag deployments, drivers h v c reported abrasions to the face, neck, and forearms due to deploying airbags, A study of the airbag design and deployments parameters affecting the incidence and severity of abrasions caused by driver-side airbags has led to the development of a laboratory test procedure to evaluate the potential of an airbag design m cause skin injury This report describes the procedure, which is based an static deployments of airbags into a cylindrical lest fixture. The target area is covered with a material that responds to abrasion-producing events in a manner related to human skin tolerance. Test results show excellent correlation with abrasion injuries produced by airbag deployments into the skin of human volunteers.
Technical Paper

A Method for Documenting Locations of Rib Fractures for Occupants in Real-World Crashes Using Medical Computed Tomography (CT) Scans

A method has been developed to identify and document the locations of rib fractures from two-dimensional CT images obtained from occupants of crashes investigated in the Crash Injury Research Engineering Network (CIREN). The location of each rib fracture includes the vertical location by rib number (1 through 12), the lateral location by side of the thorax (inboard and outboard), and the circumferential location by five 36-degree segments relative to the sternum and spine. The latter include anterior, anterior-lateral, lateral, posterior-lateral, and posterior regions. 3D reconstructed images of the whole ribcage created from the 2D CT images using Voxar software are used to help identify fractures and their rib number. A geometric method for consistently locating each fracture circumferentially is described.
Technical Paper

A Method for Measuring the Field of View in Vehicle Mirrors

A new method is presented for physically measuring drivers' field of view in rearview mirrors. A portable coordinate measurement apparatus (FARO Arm) is used to measure the mirror locations, contours, and curvature. Measurements of the driver's head and eye locations while looking into each mirror are also made. Raytracing is used to map the two- or three-dimensional field of view in each mirror. The method differentiates between monocular, binocular, and ambinocular fields of view, and can account for head movements. This method has been applied to passenger cars, light trucks, and heavy trucks to document how drivers aim their mirrors during normal use.
Technical Paper

A Multi-Modality Image Data Collection Protocol for Full Body Finite Element Model Development

This study outlines a protocol for image data collection acquired from human volunteers. The data set will serve as the foundation of a consolidated effort to develop the next generation full-body Finite Element Analysis (FEA) models for injury prediction and prevention. The geometry of these models will be based off the anatomy of four individuals meeting extensive prescreening requirements and representing the 5th and 50th percentile female, and the 50th and 95th percentile male. Target values for anthropometry are determined by literature sources. Because of the relative strengths of various modalities commonly in use today in the clinical and engineering worlds, a multi-modality approach is outlined. This approach involves the use of Computed Tomography (CT), upright and closed-bore Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), and external anthropometric measurements.
Technical Paper

A Pilot Study of Occupant Accommodation and Seat Belt Fit for Law Enforcement Officers

Law enforcement officers (LEO) make extensive use of vehicles to perform their jobs, often spending large portions of a shift behind the wheel. Few LEO vehicles are purpose-built; the vast majority are modified civilian vehicles. Data from the field indicate that LEO suffer from relatively high levels musculoskeletal injury that may be due in part to poor accommodation provided by their vehicles. LEO are also exposed to elevated crash injury risk, which may be exacerbated by a compromise in the performance of the occupant restraint systems due to body-borne equipment. A pilot study was conducted to demonstrate the application of three-dimensional anthropometric scanning and measurement technology to address critical concerns related to vehicle design. Detailed posture and belt fit data were gathered from five law enforcement officers as they sat in the patrol vehicles that they regularly used and in a mockup of a mid-sized vehicle.
Technical Paper

A Simulation Graphical User Interface for Vehicle Dynamics Models

This paper describes the architecture and use of a simulation graphical user interface (SGUI) that uses new (1990's) computer hardware and software concepts to provide an easy-to-use environment for simulating vehicle dynamics. The user interacts with windows, buttons, and pop-up menus, in a multitasking environment such as UNIX, Windows®, or Mac OS®. The SGUI reduces the level of computer expertise required of the user. Most information is shown in a graphic context, and “what if?” options are selected by clicking buttons and selecting from pop-up menus. The SGUI is organized as a data base of vehicles, vehicle parts, vehicle inputs, and simulation results. The organization makes it easy for users to assemble the component data needed to (1) simulate new systems, (2) run simulation programs automatically, and (3) view the results graphically. The SGUI is assembled from low-cost software components.
Technical Paper

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

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

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

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

ATD Positioning Based on Driver Posture and Position

Current ATD positioning practices depend on seat track position, seat track travel range, and design seatback angle to determine appropriate occupant position and orientation for impact testing. In a series of studies conducted at the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, driver posture and position data were collected in forty-four vehicles. The seat track reference points currently used to position ATDs (front, center, and rear of the track) were found to be poor predictors of the average seat positions selected by small female, midsize male, and large male drivers. Driver-selected seatback angle was not closely related to design seatback angle, the measure currently used to orient the ATD torso. A new ATD Positioning Model was developed that more accurately represents the seated posture and position of drivers who match the ATD statures.
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

Analysis of Truck-Light Vehicle Crash Data for Truck Aggressivity Reduction

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the University of Michigan Transportation Institute are investigating truck design countermeasures to provide safety benefits during collisions with light vehicles. The goal is to identify approaches that would best balance costs and benefits. This paper outlines the first phase of this study, an analysis of two-vehicle, truck/light vehicle crashes from 1996 through 1998 using several crash data bases to obtain a current description and determine the scope of the aggressivity problem. Truck fronts account for 60% of light vehicle fatalities in collisions with trucks. Collision with the front of a truck carries the highest probability of fatal (K) or incapacitating (A) injury. Truck sides account for about the same number of K and A-injuries combined as truck fronts, though injury probability is substantially lower than in crashes involving the front of a truck.
Technical Paper

Anthropometric and Postural Variability: Limitations of the Boundary Manikin Approach

Human figure models are commonly used to facilitate ergonomic assessments of vehicle driver stations and other workplaces. One routine method of workstation assessment is to conduct a suite of ergonomic analyses using a family of boundary manikins, chosen to represent a range of anthropometric extremes on several dimensions. The suitability of the resulting analysis depends both on the methods by which the boundary manikins are selected and on the methods used to posture the manikins. The automobile driver station design problem is used to examine the relative importance of anthropometric and postural variability in ergonomic assessments. Postural variability is demonstrated to be nearly as important as anthropometric variability when the operator is allowed a substantial range of component adjustment. The consequences for boundary manikin procedures are discussed, as well as methods for conducting accurate and complete assessments using the available tools.
Technical Paper

Anthropometry for WorldSID A World-Harmonized Midsize Male Side Impact Crash Dummy

The WorldSID project is a global effort to design a new generation side impact crash test dummy under the direction of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). The first WorldSID crash dummy will represent a world-harmonized mid-size adult male. This paper discusses the research and rationale undertaken to define the anthropometry of a world standard midsize male in the typical automotive seated posture. Various anthropometry databases are compared region by region and in terms of the key dimensions needed for crash dummy design. The Anthropometry for Motor Vehicle Occupants (AMVO) dataset, as established by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI), is selected as the basis for the WorldSID mid-size male, updated to include revisions to the pelvis bone location. The proposed mass of the dummy is 77.3kg with full arms. The rationale for the selected mass is discussed. The joint location and surface landmark database is appended to this paper.
Technical Paper

Automobile Occupant Posture Prediction for Use with Human Models

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

Biomechanical Accident Investigation Methodology Using Analytical Techniques

The purpose of this paper is to describe a combination of state-of-the-art detailed accident investigation procedures, computerized vehicle crash and occupant modeling, and biomechanical analysis of human injury causation into a method for obtaining enhanced biomechanical data from car crashes. Four accident cases, out of eighteen investigated, were selected for detailed reconstruction. Three were frontal impacts while the fourth was lateral. The CRASH II and MVMA 2-D analytical models were used in the reconstruction process. Occupant motions, force interactions with vehicle components, accelerations on the various body segments, and much other information was produced in the simulation process and is reported in this paper along with scene and injury data from the accidents.
Technical Paper

Biomechanical Assessment of a Rear-Seat Inflatable Seatbelt in Frontal Impacts

This study evaluated the biomechanical performance of a rear-seat inflatable seatbelt system and compared it to that of a 3-point seatbelt system, which has a long history of good real-world performance. Frontal-impact sled tests were conducted with Hybrid III anthropomorphic test devices (ATDs) and with post mortem human subjects (PMHS) using both restraint systems and a generic rear-seat configuration. Results from these tests demonstrated: a) reduction in forward head excursion with the inflatable seatbelt system when compared to that of a 3-point seatbelt and; b) a reduction in ATD and PMHS peak chest deflections and the number of PMHS rib fractures with the inflatable seatbelt system and c) a reduction in PMHS cervical-spine injuries, due to the interaction of the chin with the inflated shoulder belt. These results suggest that an inflatable seatbelt system will offer additional benefits to some occupants in the rear seats.
Technical Paper

Biomechanical Considerations for Assessing Interactions of Children and Small Occupants with Inflatable Seat Belts

NHTSA estimates that more than half of the lives saved (168,524) in car crashes between 1960 and 2002 were due to the use of seat belts. Nevertheless, while seat belts are vital to occupant crash protection, safety researchers continue efforts to further enhance the capability of seat belts in reducing injury and fatality risk in automotive crashes. Examples of seat belt design concepts that have been investigated by researchers include inflatable, 4-point, and reverse geometry seat belts. In 2011, Ford Motor Company introduced the first rear seat inflatable seat belts into production vehicles. A series of tests with child and small female-sized Anthropomorphic Test Devices (ATD) and small, elderly female Post Mortem Human Subjects (PMHS) was performed to evaluate interactions of prototype inflatable seat belts with the chest, upper torso, head and neck of children and small occupants, from infants to young adolescents.
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

Biomechanics of 4-Point Seat Belt Systems in Farside Impacts

The biomechanical behavior of a harness style 4-point seat belt system in farside impacts was investigated through dummy and post mortem human subject tests. Specifically, this study was conducted to evaluate the effect of the inboard shoulder belt portion of a 4-point seat belt on the risk of vertebral and soft-tissue neck injuries during simulated farside impacts. Two series of sled tests simulating farside impacts were completed with crash dummies of different sizes, masses and designs to determine the forces and moments on the neck associated with loading of the shoulder belt. The tests were also performed to help determine the appropriate dummy to use in further testing. The BioSID and SID-IIs reasonably simulated the expected kinematics response and appeared to be reasonable dummies to use for further testing. Analysis also showed that dummy injury measures were lower than injury assessment reference values used in development of side impact airbags.