Virtual crash tests has been part of Toyota Motor Corporation’s safety development since year 2000. They call it THUMS, which stands for Total Human Model for Safety. Recently, they added new models for children with ages 3, 6, and 10 on the software’s version 4.
THUMS is a software developed by Toyota to foresee injuries in an event of a crash. This is different from actual crash test courses with plastic dummies, as it involves projected injuries to human beings – all through the software. It’s used to develop safety features in their models in order to make their vehicles safer for people.
Adding child models to the software will ultimately increase the safety standards of Toyota vehicles. At their age, they have softer bones and smaller bodies, which means they will take car crashes differently as compared to adults.
The new models represent the children’s average physique according to age – 10-year old (138 cm tall), 6-year old (118 cm tall), and 3-year old (94 cm tall). In addition to that, the current adult models will also have new pedestrian and passenger versions to further improve the safety technologies.
Of note, THUMS has been used by Toyota and other organizations around the world. It has also been part of the US-based NASCAR safety regulations to monitor seat shapes in order to mitigate rib injuries of drivers involved in racing accidents.
There have been major upgrades to the software since the launch of version 1 in 2000. In 2003, the version 2 models were given faces and bone structure. They then added brain simulation on the version 3 software launched in 2008. Then in 2010, version 4 was upgraded with detailed brain modeling and internal organs, along with their placement and interaction in the body. Lastly, in 2015, version 5 dummies now has muscle movement, allowing them to simulate what occupants might do prior to a crash.
Although version 5 has been in place since last year, the updates done for the version 4 still makes it valuable in terms of vehicle safety. Overall, the continuous development of THUMS is great news for consumers, as it ensures that their safety isn’t compromised.
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