UAS Ground Collision Severity Studies

The Alliance of System Safety for UAS through Research Excellence (ASSURE) COE and one certified partner will conduct analysis and testing to extend the results of the Task A4 Ground Collision Severity and the Task A11 Part 107 Waiver Study conducted in 2015-2016 by the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH), Mississippi State University (MSU), Kansas University, Embry Riddle University and Wichita State University (WSU). The continued analysis of collision dynamics of small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) in conjunction with the definition and validation of injury metrics is critically important to defining standards and metrics necessary for rulemaking for flight over people. The ASSURE COE consisting of UAH, MSU, WSU and The Ohio State University (OSU) and one certified partner consisting of Virginia Technical University will conduct the research under this proposal. The team will develop a simplified testing method for testing injury potential of sUAS to provide a clear path for applicants to apply for a flight over people waiver under Part 107 or provide a safety case that can be consistent with future flight over people rulemaking. Additional testing, using Anthropomorphic Test Dummy (ATD) Hybrid III 50th Percentile Crash Dummies, will be used to evaluate injury potential of a greater number of vehicles and provide validation data for human modeling efforts and the simplified test methods. ATD Hybrid III 50th Percentile Crash Dummy tests will also be utilized to further refine the Phantom 3 tests conducted during the Task A4 and Task A11 tests and will include additional wood and steel impact tests at different impact KEs and impact orientations to validate conclusions made in the Task A4 Final Report. ATD Hybrid III tests will include scenarios to evaluate steady state parachute descent rates for certain vehicles that would not be acceptable without such devices in order to evaluate the simple test method for larger multi-rotors and fixed wing platforms. The research will solely focus on the post deployment/descent aspect of the parachute on the sUAS impacts and not be utilized to develop a parachute standard or evaluate parachute deployments to develop such a standard. Additional modeling of impact dynamics with a human body model and a biofedelic head and neck model will be conducted. These modeling tools will be validated using testing conducted under this research. These models will allow for a broader evaluation of a number of impact scenarios and vehicles without the limitations and cost of complete testing. The Ohio State University will conduct cadaver testing to collect human injury data to validate the human injury metrics defined by the ATD Hybrid III Crash Test Dummy tests and the modeling efforts. The ASSURE COE will deliver a comprehensive set of tools and validation test cases to support the use of the simplified test approach and refine the required methods for applicant testing that can provide a framework for flight over people safety evaluations that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), industry and the general public can broadly accept.


    • English


    • Status: Completed
    • Funding: $2042581
    • Contract Numbers:





    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Federal Aviation Administration

      800 Independence Avenue, SW
      Washington, DC  United States  20591
    • Managing Organizations:

      Mississippi State University

      Mississippi State University, MS  United States  39762
    • Performing Organizations:

      University of Alabama, Huntsville

      Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
      Huntsville, AL  United States  35899

      Wichita State University

      Wichita, Kansas  United States 

      Mississippi State University, Mississippi State

      P.O. Box 9542
      Mississippi State, MS  United States  39762

      Ohio State University

      Columbus, OH  United States 
    • Principal Investigators:

      Arterburn, David

      Olivares, Gerardo

      Prabhu, Rajkumar

      Bolte, John

    • Start Date: 20170801
    • Expected Completion Date: 20190531
    • Actual Completion Date: 0
    • USDOT Program: Centers of Excellence

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01648051
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Alliance for System Safety of UAS through Research Excellence (ASSURE)
    • Contract Numbers: 15-C-UAS-UAH-04, 15-C-UAS-WISU-05, 15-C-UAS-MSU-28, 15-C-UAS-OSU-10
    • Files: RIP, USDOT
    • Created Date: Oct 4 2017 5:26PM