The side of the head is a frequent impact site for pedal cyclists, motorcyclists, and industrial workers. It is vulnerable to impact, yet many helmet standards do not have impact tests at the side of the helmet. Laboratory impact tests should reproduce the phenomena in real impacts, but usually they do not allow the headform to rotate, or ignore the effect of the neck on the motion of the head. The authors designed a linkage, simulating the flexibility of the neck, for use with anthropomorphic dummies in helmet testing. Impacts at the side of the helmet, normal to the helmet surface, were made with flat and hemispherical strikers. Head rotation during impacts caused the impact site to move, in some cases to below the level protected by the helmet. The peak angular head acceleration correlated with the peak linear acceleretions. Neck flexibility means that helmets can protect the head from higher kinetic energy impacts than those specified in standards using immovable headforms or impact anvils. The load spreading efficiency of polypropylene foam, used in soft shell bicycle helmets, is better than that of polystyrene foam. The authors conclude that the side of the head can be protected by a suitable helmet design.

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    The Boulevard, Langford Lane
    Kidlington, Oxford  United Kingdom  OX5 1GB
  • Authors:
    • Gilchrist, A
    • Mills, N J
  • Publication Date: 1996-7


  • English

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00726205
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: HS-042 382
  • Files: HSL, TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: Sep 18 1996 12:00AM