Crashtest dummy THOR-5F by Kistler and Cellbond

Winterthur, July 2023 - Kistler and Cellbond are launching the new THOR-5F ATD crash test dummy featuring a complete measuring chain. The model corresponds with the fifth percentile of the adult population – only five percent of all adults are smaller and lighter than the dummy. THOR-5F ATD consists of 250 separate components and, thanks to its adapted neck, clavicle and pelvis design, closely matches the human anatomy. Kistler developed the compact DiMod 1.6 digitizing module to accommodate geometries that are smaller than the standard THOR-50M. This enabled engineers to increase the number of signal channels to a maximum of 288 and to ensure a higher integration density in data acquisition.

For more than 25 years, Kistler has been delivering high-precision measurement results in the field of vehicle safety. Cellbond and Kistler have now created a new-generation THOR (Test Device for Human Occupant Restraint) based on drawings published in 2019 by the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) in the USA. The THOR-5F is the successor to the Hybrid III 5th Percentile ATD. It corresponds with the fifth percentile of passengers in crash tests and enables a more realistic simulation of frontal impacts, particularly with female vehicle occupants who are smaller and lighter than the average person. The independent European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) recommends implementation of the THOR-5F for future crash tests, presumably from 2029.

The crash test dummy THOR 5F ATD is part of the crash test measuring technology portfolio by Kistler
The new THOR 5F ATD features improved biofidelity and easier assembly. The simplified rib structure is shown here.

Improved biofidelity and easier assembly

Cellbond began designing the new crash test dummy in September 2021. Kistler joined the project in January 2022 and took over the development of the ribs and rib stiffeners – components that the company also supplied for the THOR-50M. The project engineers significantly reduced the number of components required for the new model: from 750 parts required for the THOR-50M, to just 250 individual components in the THOR-5F. This greatly simplifies production and assembly of the dummy. THOR-5F is also even more closely matched to the human anatomy than its predecessors. The neck, clavicle and pelvic bone are very similar to the human figure – which enables more realistic test situations and results.

Precise measurement technology in a tiny space thanks to high integration density

Up to 160 measurement axes are installed in the crash test dummy to precisely assess the loads on occupants in a frontal crash. Kistler developed a special inertial measurement unit (IMU) for the THOR-5F that is mounted in the head, chest, pelvis and feet – i.e., where the body absorbs the initial impact. In an extremely small space, these IMUs measure three acceleration and three rotation rates. Sensor signals are converted from analog to digital measurement data in the sensor itself.
Kistler developed a special DTI recorder with 288 channels to easily connect the dummy's 160 measurement axes. This design is based on the THOR-50M recorder with storage and battery units physically separated and connected by a single cable. If the connection to the onboard measuring system is interrupted during a crash test, the recorder continues to log reliable measurement data. This also enables standalone use of the crash test dummy.

Complete solution from a single source

Kistler is expanding its portfolio of solutions for crash test applications with the new THOR-5F. Along with the THOR-50M crash test dummy for frontal impacts, Kistler markets the World SID-50 dummy for side impacts. Kistler also supplies a wide range of other dummy and structural sensors with integrated technology for measuring physical values including force, torque, acceleration, angular rate, displacement, current and voltage. Kistler software solutions simplify the planning and execution of crash tests. An extensive portfolio of Kistler services ensures that test engineers have the reliable and precise equipment they need to design safe vehicles.

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