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Combat Helmet Design Incorporating Multiple Ballistic Threats, Brain Functional Areas and Injury Considerations

[+] Author Affiliations
Peter Matic

Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, DC

Alex E. Moser

Nova Research Inc., Alexandria, VA

Robert N. Saunders

Leidos, Reston, VA

Paper No. IMECE2016-67364, pp. V003T04A039; 10 pages
  • ASME 2016 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 3: Biomedical and Biotechnology Engineering
  • Phoenix, Arizona, USA, November 11–17, 2016
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5053-4
  • Copyright © 2016 by ASME


Combat helmet protection zone parametric design is presented for small arms and explosive device ballistic threat notional spatial distributions. The analysis is conducted using a computer aided design software application developed to evaluate ballistic threats, helmet design parameters, and a standard set of common brain injuries associated with head impacts. The analysis helps to define the helmet trade space, facilitates prototyping, and supports helmet design optimization.

Direct head impacts and helmet impacts, with and without helmet back face contact to the head, are tabulated. Head strikes are assumed to produce critical or fatal penetrating injuries. Helmet back face deflections and impact generated projectile-helmet-head motions are determined. Helmet impact obliquity is accounted for by attenuating back face deflection. Head injury estimates for ten common focal and diffuse head injuries are determined from the back face deflections and the head injury criteria. These, in turn, are related to the abbreviated injury score and associated radiographic dimensional diagnostic criteria and loss of consciousness diagnostic criteria from the trauma literature.

Copyright © 2016 by ASME
Topics: Design , Brain , Wounds , Warfare



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