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to the second Newsletter of the THUMS User Community (TUC).

TUC is a project of the University of Munich in cooperation with Adam Opel AG, AUDI AG, Autoliv, BMW AG, Daimler AG, Dr. Ing. h.c.F. Porsche AG, Toyota Motor Corporation and Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft. The aim of TUC is to setup a framework and harmonise general and administrative requirements for the implementation of Finite-Element Human Body Models (HBMs) in vehicle and traffic safety applications. Therefore, the project partners work closely together to achieve these goals.

Together with Associated Partners the TUC project intends to develop a cooperative platform of partners with similar interests and to accumulate the pre-competitive know-how and experience in the field of application of HBM.

This newsletter will regularly inform interested THUMS Users not only about the current status of the TUC project, but also about other TUC related projects and activities in the field of FE Human Body Models in vehicle and traffic safety applications.

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Stapp Car Crash Conference 2013

The STAPP Car Crash Conference took place in Orlando/Florida from November 11 to November 13, 2013. Several interesting research activities in the field of Human Body Modelling were presented. The most important presentations related to Human Body FE modelling are outlined in the following.

Chalmers University conducted a study investigating the Pre-Crash Phase. 20 Volunteers performed maximum voluntary braking and were subjected also to autonomous braking conditions to evaluate several restraint systems configurations. An EMG was recorded in several anatomical points of the volunteers. Muscle activations under the test conditions varied between males and females. In standard and autonomous braking the muscle activation occurred as a response of the inertial load. Reaction times for females were shorter as the males. (#2013-01)

UMTRI and the Toyota Technical Center USA conducted a study in the field of Ergonomics investigating the posture and belt fit of 46 men and 51 women. The location of belt was analysed taking underlying skeletal structures into account and recorded in 3D. Based on this, new belt paths depending on BMI and stature were determined. (#2013-02)

IFSTTAR, Lyon, and Université Lyon investigated thoracic injury responses. Therefore, thirty-nine relaxed volunteers of different anthropometries, gender and age were submitted to non-injurious sled tests in order to find a correlation between age, gender and BMI with chest deflection response measured using 3D reconstruction methods. The analysis suggests that among subjects over 40-years-old, thinness leads to higher K-values (stiffness). (#2013-03)

Ford Motor Corporation and UMTRI evaluated restraint systems by performing small size ATD and PMHS tests. A new airbelt prototype for rear seat occupants and its influence on upper torso, head and neck response was evaluated. All ATD test showed lower results that the injury reference values reported by Metz et al. (2003). PMHS did not show injuries induced by the airbelt system. (#2013-04)

Wayne State University simulated the interaction between pedestrian and vehicle front using Madymo. Different pedestrian sizes, hoods, velocities and front-end profiles as well as a pop-up hood systems were evaluated. Aim of the study was to determine a relationship between these factors and second head impact (defined as the impact of the pedestrian with the ground after the primary impact of the pedestrian with the vehicle) characteristics. A correlation between different profiles and the configuration of the second impact was found. The hood pop-up system changes the overall kinematics of the pedestrian during the crash. (#2013-05)

IFSTTAR, Lyon, and Université Lyon investigated the pedestrian pre-crash reaction recording 51 non-impacting reactions using a video projection methodology simulation of a 40 kph struck on the side. Most volunteers were found to run, step-back or stop taking fright at a dangerous situation. Age and the initial velocity were identified to be factors influencing the pedestrian response. The data could be used for crash avoidance systems development. (#2013-06)

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety compared the results from pedestrian head impact testing made for Euro NCAP to the real world rates of fatal and incapacitating injuries in U.S. pedestrian crashes. Analysis included tests on windshield, A-pillar, and hoods. 2.17-4.04% of the pedestrians obtained fatal injuries and 10.45-15.35% incapacitating injuries. The predicted risks from both the Euro NCAP and GTR 9 test zones showed high correlations with both pedestrian fatal and incapacitating injury rates. (#2013-07)

The National Traffic Safety and Environment Laboratory, Japan, analysed ITARDA data to find a correlation between car impact velocity and pedestrian injuries considering different types and sizes of vehicles. Results showed that a 10-km/h reduction in the impact velocity could mitigate severe pedestrian injuries in cases involving impact velocities of 40 km/h. The response of the pedestrian was found to be also strongly dependent on the pedestrian height, front-end shape, and structure stiffness. (#2013-08)

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration performed crash test simulations with head FE models and real tests with ATD hardware and used college football data (head impact) to develop a revised version of the kinematic “BrIC” head injury criteria. Rotationtal velocity and not rotational acceleration were found to be the injury mechanism of head injury. FE models showed a high correlation between each other regarding the CSDM (Cumulative strain damage measure) and MPS (Maximum Principal Strain). BrIC can be used as a complement of HIC. (#2013-10)

TNO conducted a study to quantify kinematic behaviour and muscle activation in simulated steering tests in several realistic conditions. Therefore, 108 maneuver and lane-change tests were performed with 10 volunteers. The drivers were seated on a rigid seat and restrained with a 4-point belt with retractor. The reactions were tracked using 3D high-speed cameras. EMG was used for sensing muscular reactions. Based on the results, corridors for head displacement, pitch and roll and the displacement of T1, shoulder, elbow, hand and knee were created. (#2013-13)

The University of Virginia, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and Takata Corporation performed 36 tests with PMHS in far-side lateral position with 3 point seat belt investigating occupant kinematics during crash. A parametric analysis was performed to determine the influence of the D-ring point position, pelvis restraint etc. The kinematics of each surrogate was tracked with 3D optoelectric high speed motion system. The 60° oblique impact showed the higher head excursion than the 90° case. Oblique impacts seemed to be correlated with an increase of the torso axial rotation. (#2013-14)

UMTRI investigated the PMHS injury response in nearside impacts by conducting 11 lateral crash tests with PMHS. Corridors for the impacted body regions were aimed to be developed. Post-test CT scans were performed. The results of the tests were used to develop force-deflection response corridors for the abdomen, force history response corridors for the pelvis, the midthigh, and the thorax.. (#2013-15)

The Medical College of Wisconsin analysed previous sled tests with PMHS to investigate abdomen responses in lateral crashes. The data was normalised using the impulse-momentum method. Thorax and Abdomen deflection-time corridors in oblique side impacts were determined. The data could be used to develop improved injury reference values. (#2013-16)

The Conference Proceedings including all the presentations held during the days of STAPP can be purchased via the following link.

Conference Proceedings


Recent Advances in Strasbourg University Finite Element Head Model SUFEHM

Computation of mechanical field quantities such as strain is commonly used for prediction of the risk of certain brain injuries, e.g. Diffuse Axonal Injury (DAI). The precision of risk prediction based on FE head models is still somewhat limited. A particular challenge is constituted by the anisotropic material properties of the white matter containing the axons. In their recently published work Sahoo, Deck and Willinger obtained fractonal anisotropy and axonal fibre orientation from Diffuse Tensor Imaging of clinical patients. By doing so, the locally varying material properties and the behaviour of the white matter can be better described. Integrating this information in the brain model allowed more realistic responses in validation against brain marker displacements and brain pressure in impact/acceleration experiments from literature. The potential calculation of axonal elongation during head impacts is a promising approach for a more precise prediction of the risk of sustaining a DAI.

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UDASim - Umfassende Diskomfortbewertung für Autoinsassen durch Simulation

The Institute of Ergonomics of the Technical University of Munich (TUM) started a project evaluating the discomfort of car occupants using simulation (UDASim - Umfassende Diskomfortbewertung für Autoinsassen durch Simulation). The project is funded by der German Federal Ministry of Education and Research and runs for 3 years. Vision of this project is it to objectively evaluate design criteria with regard of the discomfort for a car occupant using occupant simulations. Digital human models like CASIMIR, RAMSIS and ANYBODY are aimed to be combined by exchanging information regarding posture, anthropometry, seating position and force. Furthermore, a valid discomfort scale will be developed, which can easily be understood by the users. The multidimensional global discomfort is aimed to be predicted using artificial neuronal meshes. All methods will be experimentally validated.

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Outlook: IRCOBI 2014 and 5. International Symposium on Human Modeling and Simulation in Automotive Safety

IRCOBI conference 2014

This year's IRCOBI conference will take place in Berlin from September 10 to September 12, 2014. Researchers in the field of biomechanics, crash mechanics, accident reconstruction, accident avoidance, sports injury, tissue modelling, epidemiology and all other fields relating to the biomechanics of injury and protective systems are invited to attend.

Deadline Short Communication: April 1, 2014


5th International Symposium on Human Modeling and Simulation in Automotive Safety

On October 14 - 15, 2014 the fifth International Symposium on “Human Modeling and Simulation in Automotive Engineering” will be held in Frankfurt (Germany).

The symposium intends to continue and further advance the dialog between researchers, software developers and industrial users of human models. It is again organized in cooperation with Wayne State University‘s renowned Bioengineering Centre, which has been a pioneer and leading institution in biomechanics research for automotive safety for more than 65 years.

A meeting of TUC partners is anticipated to take place during or after the Symposium.

Deadline for Abstracts: February 28, 2014

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The next TUC newsletter will appear by summer/autumn 2014.


Past events

Stapp 2013
Orlando, Florida
November, 11-13, 2013

Upcoming events

February 12, 2014

April 8 & 9, 2014

June 19 & 20, 2014

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Biomechanics Group
Institute of Legal Medicine
Nussbaumstr. 26
80336 Munich