Head and brain injuries in sports-specific environments and the effectiveness of standard safety equipment in mitigating such injuries is a current research focus area at the IBRC. Work has been conducted across multiple sporting activities including American football, lacrosse, boxing, hockey, and equestrian. At the IBRC, sports head impacts are recreated in a laboratory setting using crash test dummies instrumented with sensors to measure accelerations and velocities inside the head of an athlete. Results from these projects are used to help elucidate the causes of head and brain injuries during play as well as influence the design of the next generation of sports protective equipment.
The types of sensor configurations that fit within an ATD’s head limit the accuracy of 6 degree-of-freedom (6DOF) kinematics in severe impact conditions. Researchers in the IBRC conducted tests to develop a new fixture (6aω) that could sit at the center of gravity of the ATD head and accurately measure 6DOF kinematics. Additional testing was completed to find the first natural frequency of the fixture in order to eliminate vibrational noise in data. To complete the design, analysis of weight was conducted and a modular design was implemented, making the new 6aω fixture universal, lightweight, and easy to use and install.
Colleen Croyle, Kevin Moorhouse, John H. Bolte IV, Yun-Seok Kang
13th Annual Injury Biomechanics Symposium (May 2017).
Yun-Seok Kang, Kevin Moorhouse, John H. Bolte IV
Journal of Biomechanical Engineering (December 2011).