Sources of Error in Finite Element Simulations of Effects of Blasts on the Human Brain

Professor Petr Krysl

Recent military conflicts have resulted in an increase in the number of blast related traumatic brain injuries. The present project examines the mechanical effects in a brain impinged upon by a blast wave as simulated by a finite element coupled fluid-solid framework. Various sources of errors were assessed and conclusions are (a) the least important source of error was the assumption of linear kinematics and linear constitutive equation; (b) the discretization error was significant, and controlling it will remain a challenge; and (c) the most significant source of error was found to be the uncertainty of the input parameters (experimental variability) and the lack of knowledge of the detailed micro-mechanics of deformation of the brain tissues under conditions of blast loading.



In collaboration with Mark W. Bondi, Samuel R. Ward, and Lawrence R. Frank, UCSD/VA San Diego Healthcare System. Project was supported by Dr. Frank Stone and Dr. Ernie Young at the Chief of Naval Operations, Environmental Readiness Division

Photo: Acoustic pressure (red positive, blue negative) in the cortex. (Snapshots spaced ~0.035 ms).