Comparison of Detailed Sagittal and Transverse Finite Element Head Models to Evaluate Blast Load Response

Dilaver Singh, Philip A. Lockhart, Tyler N. Haladuick, and Duane S. Cronin


Blast, Explosive, Brain, Injury, LS-Dyna


Background: Traumatic brain injury caused by blast loading has been identified as an important injury for soldiers in modern times. A study was undertaken to refine and compare two previously developed finite element head models, in the sagittal and transverse planes, under various blast load conditions. Quasi-2D models were considered since 3D models at the necessary resolution are computationally prohibitive. Methods: The models were exposed to blast loads with three standoff distances, and compared in terms of head kinematics (acceleration, HIC) and brain tissue response (intracranial pressure, shear stress, and principle strain). Results: The brain tissue response of both models was generally in good agreement, although some key differences were observed. The predicted peak accelerations of both models were in good agreement with comparable physical tests; however the transverse model overpredicted HIC15 for closer standoffs. Conclusions: In general, the sagittal and transverse models predicted comparable results for head kinematics and brain tissue response. The tissue strains were lower and the strain rates were higher than those reported in automotive crash scenarios. The strains in the transverse plane were higher than those in the sagittal. Future research will focus on improved material properties evaluation in a wider range of blast scenarios.

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