Set of injury risk curves for different sizes and ages
When new crash test dummy hardware becomes available it is important to establish how
the measurements taken with that tool relate to a risk of injury. THORAX is a collaborative
medium-scale project under the EC Seventh Framework. It focuses on the reduction and
prevention of thoracic injuries. Within the project an improved understanding of thoracic
injury mechanisms has been implemented in an updated design for the thorax-shoulder
complex of the THOR dummy. The new dummy hardware, referred to as the THORAX
demonstrator, has been evaluated in a number of biomechanical test conditions. The data
from these tests has provided the opportunity to compare those data with injury outcome
data under equivalent loading conditions. This report describes that comparison and the
resulting injury risk curves developed.
When developing injury risk functions for a new dummy it is common practice to repeat tests
carried out with post-mortem human subjects (PMHS) with the crash test dummy. Matched
dummy data and injury records from the PMHS tests are then used in the development of
injury risk functions. Other approaches involve collection of real world accident events that
have been recreated with the dummy in the laboratory. Both of these approaches have been
adopted in this study.
Injury risk functions are commonly developed for the average male in terms of size and age.
However, age, gender and size influence the risk of injury for a given crash condition. Crash
test dummies that take these differences into account may be developed in the future.
However, as part of the THORAX project advanced scaling methods have been developed
that can be used to modify the injury risk functions to account for gender and different sizes.
Thereby the measurements obtained in crash tests with the THORAX demonstrator can be
used to predict the risk for other occupant categories than those that are close to the average
By providing the automotive industry with a superior crash test dummy, the new THORAX
demonstrator, associated injury risk functions and scaling techniques it is expected that
improved restraint systems will be developed that lead to a reduction of chest injuries.