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A computational model of the human head and neck system for the analysis of whiplash motion

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journal contribution
posted on 2016-07-20, 15:03 authored by David W. van Lopik, Memis Acar
This paper presents the development and validation of a three-dimensional multi-body model of the human head and neck for the study of whiplash motion. The model has been validated against experimental data for small and large static loading conditions. The resulting main and coupled displacements of the individual motion segments have been shown to be accurate and the moment generating capacity of the neck muscle elements realistic. The model has been used for the dynamic simulation of impacts in frontal, lateral and rear-end directions. For rear-end impacts the characteristics of ‘whiplash’ motion have been accurately reproduced in terms of head and vertebral kinematics The model results with active musculature suggest that, for rear-end impact, the influence of active muscle response is unable to significantly alter the head and neck kinematics of an initially unaware occupant but will affect the forces developed in the cervical soft-tissues.



  • Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering

Published in

International Journal of Crashworthiness






465 - 473


VAN LOPIK, D.W. and ACAR, M., 2004. A computational model of the human head and neck system for the analysis of whiplash motion. International Journal of Crashworthiness, 9 (5), pp.465-473


Taylor & Francis (© Woodhead Publishing Ltd)


AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date



This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in International Journal of Crashworthiness on 8th July 2010, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1533/ijcr.2004.0302