Neck assessment tool

Initially funded by the EPSRC as a summer student placement and more recently funded by D4D to take this further, this project has been about developing a comparative assessment tool for neck collar designs.

The tool has been built in an virtual engineering simulation environment called Finite Element Analysis.

It is based on a laser scan of a real person. The geometries of various neck collar designs are imported and various head drop scenarios are simulated to represent neck muscle weakness. The resulting contact area(s) and pressure(s) are examined and compared. The aim is to decrease pressure particularly in areas of greater sensitivity.

This tool will be applied in the forth coming Head-Up project in which new collar concepts will be trialled to see if they decrease the maximum contact pressure and distribute the contact pressure more kindly to the wearer.

The contact area and pressure results will be compared with qualitative feedback from healthy participants wearing the collars and from MND participants wearing the collars. The hypothesis is that there will be some correlation between the numerical engineering output of the tool and the qualitative user feedback, hence validating each other.

Lab4Living, Sheffield Hallam University,
Furnival Building, 153 Arundel Street, Sheffield, S1 2NU
Phone 0114 225 6753 | Fax 0114 225 6931