Date of Award

Fall 1995

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

Sances, Anthony

Second Advisor

Pintar, Frank A.

Third Advisor

Silver-Thorn, Barbara


Attempts to quantify the biofidelity of the Hybrid Ill thorax have employed indirect methods which do not fully replicate seat belt - chest loading. The few experimental studies mimicking real life crashes have used chest deflections as an evaluation criteria. Little attention has been given to the force distributions over the chest and the shoulder complex. In this study, experiments originally designed to quantify chest deflections of human cadavers and manikins, are used in an analytical scheme to predict force distributions over the chest and shoulder. In these experiments, cadavers and the 50th percentile Hybrid Ill manikin were used in deceleration sled tests to simulate a frontal crash. Six cadaver tests and two Hybrid Ill tests were conducted at high velocity impact "formula", and three cadaver tests at low velocity impact "formula". Surrogates were instrumented with two chestbands to provide chest contours. A three-point belt instrumented with a force transducer above the shoulder level was used for restraining the surrogates. Onboard and offboard high-speed cameras captured the left and frontal-left views of the occupant. The two cameras were synchronized by a flashlight and/or film event marker. The captured crash views were used to reconstruct the motion of the surrogates in three dimensions. This information was used in conjunction with the contour records from the chestbands to reconstruct the shape of the shoulder belt at five levels; the upper anchorage point, shoulder, upper chestband, lower chestband, and the lower anchorage point. Shoulder belt tension records were used with the belt shape in vector analysis to determine the forces at the three belt levels which are in contact with the occupant. Student T-test was used to establish statistical significance...



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