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Development and Preliminary Validation of a 50th Percentile Pedestrian Finite Element Model

[+] Author Affiliations
Costin D. Untaroiu, Jacob B. Putnam

Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA

Jeremy Schap, Matt L. Davis, F. Scott Gayzik

Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC

Paper No. DETC2015-47781, pp. V003T01A004; 7 pages
  • ASME 2015 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 3: 17th International Conference on Advanced Vehicle Technologies; 12th International Conference on Design Education; 8th Frontiers in Biomedical Devices
  • Boston, Massachusetts, USA, August 2–5, 2015
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division, Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5710-6
  • Copyright © 2015 by ASME


Pedestrians represent one of the most vulnerable road users and comprise nearly 22% of the road crash related fatalities in the world. Therefore, protection of pedestrians in the car-to-pedestrian collisions (CPC) has recently generated increased attention with regulations which involve three subsystem tests for adult pedestrian protection (leg, thigh and head impact tests). The development of a finite element (FE) pedestrian model could be a better alternative that characterizes the whole-body response of vehicle–pedestrian interactions and assesses the pedestrian injuries. The main goal of this study was to develop and to preliminarily validate a FE model corresponding to a 50th male pedestrian in standing posture. The FE model mesh and defined material properties are based on the Global Human Body Modeling (GHBMC) 50th percentile male occupant model. The lower limb-pelvis and lumbar spine regions of the human model were preliminarily validated against the post mortem human surrogate (PMHS) test data recorded in four-point lateral knee bending tests, pelvic impact tests, and lumbar spine bending tests. Then, pedestrian-to-vehicle impact simulations were performed using the whole pedestrian model and the results were compared to corresponding pedestrian PMHS tests. Overall, the preliminary simulation results showed that lower leg response is close to the upper boundaries of PMHS corridors. The pedestrian kinematics predicted by the model was also in the overall range of test data obtained with PMHS with various anthropometries. In addition, the model shows capability to predict the most common injuries observed in pedestrian accidents. Generally, the validated pedestrian model may be used by safety researchers in the design of front ends of new vehicles in order to increase pedestrian protection.

Copyright © 2015 by ASME



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