A Study of Car Safety Performance in Side Impact Using Human Head FE model
Paper in proceeding, 2009

This research investigated the safety performance of a passenger car in side collisions, using a side air-curtain protective device to minimize the risk of head-brain injuries. Traumatic brain injury in passenger vehicle side collisions is one of the common injury patterns with fatal consequences in traffic accidents. A dummy head has limited capability to evaluate vehicle safety performance with detailed injury related physical parameters. Continuous development of mathematical models has provided efficient tools for assessing the safety performance of a protective device. A validated head-brain FE model and air-curtain model was employed to simulate the impact responses of head-brain to B-pillar and further quantify the effect of the air-curtain on the protection of the human head in side collisions. A parametric study was conducted using the design of experiment approach. The kinematics of a head impacting the B-pillar and the air-curtain are presented. The calculated physical parameters from the head-brain FE model include the distribution of von Mises stress, shear stress, coup pressure, contrecoup pressure, and accelerations during vehicle side collision. Study outcomes suggested that using a side air-curtain protective device can reduce von Mises stress, shear stress, coup pressure, contrecoup pressure, and deceleration rate during vehicle side impact. The efficiency of the protective device for head-brain injuries is identified by reducing the HIC (Head Injury Criterion) to 80% of original values.


Bin Zhang

Hunan University

Jikuang Yang

Chalmers, Applied Mechanics, Vehicle Safety

SAE Technical Papers

01487191 (ISSN) 26883627 (eISSN)


Areas of Advance


Subject Categories

Computational Mathematics

Vehicle Engineering



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