More road safety for everyone – research with biofidelic dummies

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The inner structure of the dummy. The flexible hip allows the seated posture of a wheelchair user. Loading cases regarding this VRU type are to be investigated at EMI.

The protection of vulnerable road users (VRU) is a critical aspect of road safety. Consumer protection organizations have already established guidelines for the sake of VRU protection, which govern the development of new vehicles and, up to now, mainly concentrate on pedestrians and cyclists.

Research at EMI wants to investigate the protection of further VRU groups in detail such as wheelchair users or electric-scooter riders, as they considerably differ from other VRU with regard to posture, size or velocity. Statistics show a higher mortality rate for wheelchair users in road accidents compared to pedestrians.

For future research on these loading cases, biofidelic dummies will be used at EMI. Based on first activities by the engineering office Priester & Weide in 2013, such pedes- trian dummies were continuously advanced by the HTW Dresden and GmbH to enhance similarity to real humans with regard to injury replication, anatomy and kinematics. For example, the bone substitute of epoxy resin aluminum powder reveals similar fracture properties as the biological role model. To understand how factures of the bone substitute occur in various loading cases, the method of timeresolved and highly dynamic X-ray technology devised at EMI will be used. The comparison with simulation data from finite-element human models is supposed to create new insights for the benefit of VRU protection.