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Soft tissue human thigh and buttock finite element model to simulate vehicle seat cushion indentation

  • Paul, Gunther
  • Miller, Jason
  • Pendlebury, Jonathan
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2014
Queensland University of Technology ePrints Archive


Accurate modelling of automotive occupant posture is strongly related to the mechanical interaction between human body soft tissue and flexible seat components. This paper presents a finite-element study simulating the deflection of seat cushion foam and supportive seat structures, as well as human buttock and thigh soft tissue when seated. The thigh-buttock surface shell model was based on 95th percentile male subject scan data and made of two layers, covering thin to moderate thigh and buttock proportions. To replicate the effects of skin and fat, the neoprene rubber layer was modelled as a hyperelastic material with viscoelastic behaviour. The analytical seat model is based on a Ford production seat. The result of the finite-element indentation simulation is compared to a previous simulation of an indentation with a hard shell human model of equal geometry, and to the physical indentation result. We conclude that SAE composite buttock form and human-seat indentation of a suspended seat cushion can be validly simulated.

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