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Modeling Head Motion During Explosive Events to Assess Brain Injury Severity in a Battlefield Environment

[+] Author Affiliations
Thomas J. M. Connolly, J. Keith Clutter

University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX

Paper No. IMECE2007-43391, pp. 571-580; 10 pages
  • ASME 2007 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 10: Mechanics of Solids and Structures, Parts A and B
  • Seattle, Washington, USA, November 11–15, 2007
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4304-1 | eISBN: 0-7918-3812-9
  • Copyright © 2007 by ASME


The occurrence of blast induced brain injury in individuals serving in Iraq and Afghanistan is dramatically higher than in past conflicts. This has been attributed in part to the prevalence of roadside improvised explosive devices, or IEDs. There is a call from the military medical community to reduce the reliance on victim self-reporting as the primary diagnosis technique to determine the likelihood of brain injury after a blast. This study demonstrates the utility of computational modeling in establishing clear criteria that denotes the probability of cerebral contusion and, thus, brain injury. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is used to establish the environment from a full range of threats. This is combined with bond graph modeling of varying levels of fidelity to estimate the dynamics of the skull and brain. Results clearly show that a boundary exists in the threat parameter space that determines whether brain injury occurs.

Copyright © 2007 by ASME



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