CAESAR® Executive Summary

Scope: To generate 3-D data that will revise current anthropometric databases of civilian males and females age 18-65 of both light and heavy weights.

Current Partners (partial list)


  1. Update and augment the current body measurement database by collecting new body measurements from approximately 2,500 U.S. and 2,500 European civilians, male and female, of various weights and between the ages of 18-65.
  2. Collect, analyze, and report the new database in a format useful to scientists and engineers around the world.

The need for anthropometric data on civilian populations spans many industries and many countries. It is needed for industrial workstation layout, automobile design, apparel sizing, protective equipment design, safety assessment, and cockpit design to name just a few applications. This project is a joint venture between governments and industries to answer the need.

Using a new data collection technology referred to as Three Dimensional (3-D) Surface Anthropometry, this survey can be viewed as the construction of a baseline data set. The 3-D Surface Anthropometry extends the measurement of the body to detailed, high resolution measurement of the surface of the body. The latest automated surface anthropometry has many advantages over the traditional technologies. It is faster, less expensive, provides detail about the surface shape as well as 3-D locations of measures relative to each other, enables easy transfer to Computer Aided Design (CAD) or Manufacturing (CAM) tools, and results in a scan that is independent of the measurer, making it easier to standardize.

The data collection methods will be standardized and documented so that the database can be consistently expanded and updated. Subsequent phases could add other age groups, other countries or look at trends over time.

Research Methodology
A team of experts at the U.S. Air Force's Computerized Anthropometric Research and Design (CARD) Laboratory has unique experience in anthropometric data collection. This multi-disciplinary team combines anthropometric experience with software engineering and information system design.

The survey approach is based upon the recommendations of a working group (WG20) of the NATO sponsored Aerospace Medical Panel (AMP) of Advisory Group for Aerospace Research and Development (AGARD). The survey will be conducted in three NATO-member countries, the U.S., the Netherlands, and Italy. The recommended sampling method is stratified sampling. This means that the population is broken into subgroups with a smaller variation. The strata are based on ages 18-65, gender, ethnicity, and region of the country. In the U.S., 2,500 subjects will be surveyed and 2,500 in Europe. An effort will be made to get both lightweight and heavyweight subjects.

The standard scanning apparel for both men and women includes light gray cotton biker shorts, and a gray sports bra for women. Latex caps will be used to cover the hair. Each subject will be measured in three different scanning postures. Automatic landmark recognition (ALR) technology will be used to automatically extract anatomical landmarks from the 3-D body scans. Eighty landmarks will be placed on each subject. More than 100 univariate measures will be provided, more than 60 from the scan and approximately 40 using traditional measurements. Demographic data such as age, ethnic group, gender, region of the country, education level, and present occupation and family income will also be provided.

CAESAR Task Force
An International Task Force has been formed made up of technical experts charged with designing and developing this project. Members represent the following organizations: U.S. Air Force's Computerized Anthropometric Research and Design (CARD) Lab, Anthropology Research Project, The Boeing Company, Mazda R&D, General Motors, Department of the Navy, SAE, TNO (The Netherlands Organization), Human Factors Research Institute, Roebuck Research & Consulting, the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), and the National Research Council Canada (NRC).

CAESAR Advisory Committee
An Advisory Committee has been formed composed of financial partners contributing $50,000 and approved technical experts. The Advisory Committee membership is limited to two members per contributing organization.

The role of the Advisory Committee is to provide advisory input on the following:

SAE'S Role
SAE staff is responsible for raising industry funding for the project. When funding is secured, SAE will manage all industry aspects of the project's expenditures, expediting contracts and ensuring they are complied with, facilitating communications among the Partner Committee members, ensuring compliance with the National Cooperative Research Act, providing logistical support in arranging meetings, assisting in production and distribution of final copies of deliverables, and performing other administrative functions required by the project. SAE provides technical input by way of the CAESAR Task Force that is comprised of a multi-disciplinary team of experts.


  1. Confidential progress reports throughout the course of the project.
  2. Advance copy of final reports to include:
    • electronic versions of 3-D scans
    • 3D landmarks
    • selected univariate measures extracted from scans and traditional measurements demographic data
  3. Software: data analysis, visualization, and extraction tool to enable data users to extract measurements that are not provided.
  4. Documentation: Include SD, N, and correlation matrices for representative male and female U.S. populations and detailed measurements and landmark descriptions.

Target Timeframe

December 1997 - Start-up meeting
January 1998 - Pilot test procedures
March 1998 - First remote scan set-up
April 1998 - Data Collection Begins U.S.
December 1998 - Preliminary data from first site delivered
Summer 1999 - Data collection begins in the Netherlands
September 1, 2000 - Dutch Data Collection Complete
Summer 30, 2000 - US/North America Data Collection Complete
February 1, 2001 - Italian Data collection begins
March 30, 2001 - U.S./NA Data Delivery
May 30, 2001 - Dutch Data Delivery
September 2001 - Italian Data Collection Complete
December 2001 - Italian Data Delivered


  1. Substantial cost reduction for data.
  2. Quicker access to the data, since nonparticipants will have at least a one year lag time.
  3. Input into the data collection process to ensure key requirements are met.
  4. Data can be incorporated into a 3-D computer aided design for automated manufacturing, equipment customization, rapid prototyping, crash dummy modeling, virtual design an evaluation, and computer animation.
  5. More complete data set.
  6. Able to provide safer systems with superior operability and performance and reduce modification costs.
  7. Recognition for sponsoring this historic landmark event.
  8. Significant press coverage.
  9. Able to show the technology in company advertisements and promotional material.
  10. Increased user/customer satisfaction and loyalty

Project cost
Total project cost: $6,000,000
SAE consortia cost: $1,000,000

Cost to sponsor
Advisory committee member: $50,000

SAE is no longer accepting partners in this project. CAESAR data is projected to be available to the public approximately June 2002. Please check this website for further updates.