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ATD (Anthropomorphic Test Dummy) Injury Metric Development (ATD_Injury_Metric)
Principal Investigator
Research Area:
Human factors
Species Studied
Scientific Name: Homo sapiens Species: Human


Anthropomorphic test devices (ATDs) – the Hybrid III and THOR – used to test the Occupant Protection requirements are not well correlated to low injury risk, as these devices were designed for automotive use. Automotive research is directed at preventing severe injuries in very low probability events. NASA vehicles, such as the Orion, require a lower risk of injury during dynamic phases of flight because the occupants will experience dynamic loading during every flight. The objective of this study is to develop injury risk functions for the Hybrid III and THOR ATDs.

This study is focused on five areas of the body, each evaluating a unique injury response mechanism lower neck injury in rearward loading, vertical neck loading, upper and lower neck under lateral loading, thorax in lateral loading and pelvis in lateral loading.
The biomechanics and potential injuries of each location were investigated using the following specific aims:

  1. Identify appropriate datasets for THOR comparison
  2. Test THOR in same conditions as historical testing
  3. Use historical human data to establish tolerance and injury risk focusing on lateral responses and sex differences
  4. Use Bayesian analysis combined with survival analysis along with human tolerance to estimate injury risk.
  5. Use results of prior data mining and existing literature as prior distribution
  6. Develop new Injury Assessment Reference Values based on the new statistical analysis

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Yoganandan N, Pintar FA, Banjeree A. Load-based lower neck injury criteria for females from rear impact from cadaver experiments. Annals of Biomedical Engineering. 2017.May;45: 1194. [DOI]

Yoganandan N, Chirvi S, Pintar FA, Baisden JL, Banjeree A. Preliminary female cervical spine injury risk curves from PMHS tests. Journal of Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Behaviors. 2018. April 24; 83:143-147. [DOI]

Yoganandan N, Chirvi S, Voo L, Pintar FA, Banerjee A. Role of age and injury mechanism on cervical spine injury tolerance from head contact loading. Traffic Injury Prevention. 2018.19:2;165-172. [DOI]

Yoganandan N, Humm J, DeVogel N, Banerjee A, Pintar F, Somers T. Pelvis injury risk curves in side impacts from human cadaver experiments using survival analysis and Brier score metrics. Traffic Injury Prevention. 2019. November 25; S137-S142. [DOI]

Risk assessment
Stress, mechanical

Data Information
Data Availability
Archive is complete. Data sets are not publicly available but can be requested.
Data Sets+ Request data

Injury risk level
Lateral impact
Loading dynamics
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Mission/Study Information
Mission Launch/Start Date Landing/End Date Duration
Ground 05/01/2009 In Progress

Human Research Program (HRP) Human Research Roadmap (HRR) Information
Crew health and performance is critical to successful human exploration beyond low Earth orbit. The Human Research Program (HRP) investigates and mitigates the highest risks to human health and performance, providing essential countermeasures and technologies for human space exploration. Risks include physiological and performance effects from hazards such as radiation, altered gravity, and hostile environments, as well as unique challenges in medical support, human factors, and behavioral health support. The HRP utilizes an Integrated Research Plan (IRP) to identify the approach and research activities planned to address these risks, which are assigned to specific Elements within the program. The Human Research Roadmap is the web-based tool for communicating the IRP content.

The Human Research Roadmap is located at:

+ Click here for information of how this experiment is contributing to the HRP's path for risk reduction.

Additional Information
Managing NASA Center
Johnson Space Center (JSC)
Responsible NASA Representative
Institutional Support
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Proposal Date
Proposal Source
Directed Research