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Whiplash Testing and Evaluation in Rear Impacts


In real-world accidents, distortions of the cervical spine or so-called whiplash injuries following a rear impact are among the most expensive injuries for the insurance industry. About 75 % of all injury costs of the insurers are caused by whiplash injuries in highly-motorized countries. About 80 % of all injuries in a rear impact are whiplash-injuries. This is why this type of injury - even though it is neither very serious nor lethal - has reached a high priority in the endeavors to develop test procedures and assessment criteria which help in designing constructive measures in the car in order to avoid this type of injury. As an introduction, this seminar refers to the different accident data for whiplash injuries, which offer many realizations but no consistent pattern with regard to the biomechanical injury mechanisms. However, some organizations - mainly from the field of consumer information and insurance institutes - are working on the development of test procedures and assessment criteria. The most active ones are Thatcham (UK) and IIHS (USA) which are united in the group IIWPG (International Insurance Whiplash Prevention Group), SNRA and Folksam (Sweden) and the German ADAC. In 2008 Euro NCAP has introduced a whiplash test procedure as part of its rating system. In 2014 an additional static assessment for the rear seats was added. In 2020 Euro NCAP introduced a new Whiplash assessment on front seats. Where concepts and methods from the future legal requirement the Global Technical Regulation No. 7 Phase II (Head Restraints) can be recognised. The Euro NCAP assessment will be explained in detail in the seminar. Furthermore, the EEVC working group 20 is active as a consulting authority concerning whiplash injuries for the legislation in Europe. The Global Technical Regulation No. 7 Phase I (Head Restraints, short GTR 7) is unsatisfactory from the European point of view. Therefore the United Nations work on a second phase of this regulation. The content of the GTR 7 Phase II gives the legal base for the future HR development requirements. The focus of this work is on improving the BioRID dummy and on the definition of so called Seat Performance Criteria. All discussions about the assessment of whiplash injuries within the framework of consumer information have in common, that the protection effect in a rear-end impact needs to be examined in an isolated vehicle seat by means of a sled test using a generic acceleration pulse. It turns out to be problematic, however, that presently there is no traumato-mechanical explanation of the phenomenon ?whiplash injury? and that all the currently discussed dummy criteria with the respective limit values follow a so-called ?black-box approach?. Experts try to correlate the measured dummy criteria with the findings from accident data and to thus derive limit values. In this context the available dummy-technology with the different measuring devices and criteria, as well as the proposed limit values are going to be presented. In the last part of the seminar different seat design concepts (energy-absorbing, respectively geometry-improving), sub-divided into active and passive systems will be introduced, and their advantages and disadvantages will be discussed.

Who should attend?

The seminar addresses development engineers who are new in the field of rear impacts or who have already got some experience in the field of safety, as well as developers of subassemblies which have to fulfill a crash-relevant function. It is furthermore especially interesting for project managers and managers who deal with the topic of rear-end impacts and who would like to obtain a better knowledge of this subject in order to use it for an improvement of procedures.

Course Contents

  • Introduction into the characteristics of a rear-end impact
  • Overview of the most important whiplash requirements
  • Injury criteria
  • Dummy-technology for rear impacts
  • Presentation of the Euro NCAP and FMVSS 202-dynamic test procedures
  • Outlook on possible harmonization-tendencies
  • Explanation of the possible design measures in car seats

Thomas Frank
LEAR Corporation GmbH

Frank Thomas Frank joined the passive safety department of LEAR Corporation in 2002 after graduating from the Technical University of Berlin in physical engineering sciences. At LEAR Thomas Frank initially worked as a test engineer in crash testing, later he developed head rests. Today he is expert for head restraints and low speed rear impact safety. In his position he guides the seat development with respect to meet whiplash protection requirements in regulations and consumer tests.

Date Language Price Code
18 Sep 2024 English 830 EUR  (990 EUR from 22 Aug 2024 ) 4309
Alzenau ( gmbh, Siemensstraße 12, 63755 Alzenau) » Register
Thomas Frank (LEAR Corporation GmbH)
Seminar hours  
Wednesday 09:00 - 17:00

This course is available as an in-house seminar. The trainer comes to your site - you save travel expenses and travel time. Get an offer.

Your contact person

Dr. Dirk Ulrich
Phone.: 06023 - 96 40 - 66

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