DTS awarded Army contract to develop blast test dummy

March 26, 2015

Diversified Technical Systems (DTS) has been awarded a contract from the U.S. Army to develop the first instrumented test dummy designed specifically for military vehicle blast testing. The new test device will be used to assess potential skeletal injuries of soldiers exposed to under-body blast (UBB) events like those from improvised explosive devices (IED) commonly found in combat zones. This multi-phased project, called the Warrior Injury Assessment Manikin (WIAMan), includes defining injury-assessment criteria, blast research, and DTS’s key role, which includes developing a new state-of-the-art test dummy with internal miniature data recorders and sensors to capture the test results.

Because the current test dummies have been adopted from the automotive safety industry, they are designed to measure frontal or side impacts, but not those coming from under the vehicle or occupant in a blast event. The WIAMan will be used in Department of Defense live fire test and evaluation for ground vehicles, including seats and interiors, as well as soldier body armor and tactical gear.

Known for its turnkey solutions and technical support, California-based DTS is a manufacturer of data recorders and sensors used for crash, blast, and safety testing worldwide. DTS designed the first in-dummy data acquisition system (DAS) for the WorldSID, a side impact dummy developed and used in automotive regulatory testing. The breakthrough of moving the data recorders inside the test dummies has significantly changed the face of safety testing by improving the fidelity of the data and the efficiency of the test set-up.

“We are honored by the fact that the U.S. Army trusts DTS as lead on a project of this magnitude,” said DTS co-founder and company president Steve Pruitt. “WIAMan is an exciting project because it involves not only designing a brand new test dummy, but delivering a complete test instrument with sensors and the next generation data acquisition system.”

DTS has a history working with the military on projects including vehicle black boxes for capturing blast events, hundreds of which are currently fielded in war zones. In addition, DTS has shipped over 58,000 internally mounted helmet sensors, fielded by the U.S. Army and U.S. Marine Corps, that capture soldier impact data for the medical community to aid in the assessment of soldier injuries such as MTBI (Mild Traumatic Brain Injury).


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