Comparison of Human and ATD Head Kinematics during Low Speed Rear-End Impacts


Dr. William R. “Mike” Scott, Dr. Whitman E. McConnell, Mr. Herb M. Guzman, Dr. Richard P. Howard, Dr. John B. Bomar, Dr. Harry L. Smith, Dr. James V. Benedict, Dr. James H. Raddin, Jr., Dr. Charles P. Hatsell


Human Surrogates: Design, Development and Side Impact Protection (SP-945). SAE International Congress & Exposition, Detroit, MI, March 1-5, 1993. Warrendale, PA, Society of Automotive Engineers. 1993; 1-8. SAE Paper #930094.


The head motions of a human driver and hybrid III anthropometric test device (ATD) right front passenger were measured in low-speed rearend impacts (velocity change DV = 8kph) with high speed film and accelerometers.  Data were analyzed from three crashes with the same human driver (weight similar to ATD) at DV’s of 3.9, 6.6 and 7.8 kph.  The results indicate that the human’s and ATD’s head have roughly similar basic patterns of motion:  a post-impact period where the head is stationary with respect to the earth (phase I), a period where the head rotates rearward with respect to the vehicle (phase II), a subsequent period where the head rotates forward with respect to the vehicle (phase III) and a final period where the head settles into a post-impact rest position (phase IV).  The human’s head motion tended to be more complex than the ATD’s head motion during phases II and III. These results suggest that the hybrid III head kinematics are different from human head kinematics in the same low-speed rearend collisions and care must be used in predicting human head motion and whiplash injury potential from hybrid III measurements in low- speed rearend impacts.

Copyright © 1993 SAE International. This article is posted on this website with permission from SAE International. This article is for viewing only, and may not be reprinted, copied, distributed or forwarded without permission from SAE.