Numerical Study of Head/Helmet Interaction Due to Blast Loading
ARMY RESEARCH LAB ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND MD WEAPONS AND MATERIALS RESEARCH DIRECTORATE
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Recent wars have heightened the need to better protect dismounted soldiers against emerging blast and ballistic threats. Traumatic Brain Injury TBI due to blast and ballistic loading has been a subject of many recent studies. In this report, we report a numerical study to understand the effects of load transmitted through a combat helmet and pad system to the head and eventually to the brain during a blast event. The ALE module in LS-DYNA was used to model the interactions between fluid air and the structure helmethead assembly. The geometry model for the head was generated from the MRI scan of a human head. For computational simplicity, four major components of the head are modeled skin, bone, cerebrospinal fluid CSF and brain. A spherical shape blast wave was generated by using a spherical shell air zone surrounding the helmethead structure. A numerical evaluation of boundary conditions and numerical algorithm to capture the wave transmission was carried out first in a simpler geometry. The ConWep function was used to apply blast pressure to the 3D model. The blast pressure amplitude was found to reduce as it propagated through the foam pads, indicating the latter s utility in mitigating blast effects. It is also shown that the blast loads are only partially transmitted to the head. In the calculation where foam pads were not used, the pressure in the skin was found to be higher due to the underwash effect in the gap between the helmet and skin, which amplified the blast pressure.
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Numerical Mathematics
- Protective Equipment