Biomechanical modelling of the whole human spine for dynamic analysis
Developing computational models of the human spine has been a hot topic in biornechanical research for a couple of decades in order to have an understanding of the behaviour of the whole spine and the individual spinal parts under various loading conditions. The objectives of this thesis are to develop a biofidefic multi-body model of the whole human spine especially for dynamic analysis of impact situations, such as frontal impact in a car crash, and to generate finite element (FE) models of the specific spinal parts to investigate causes of injury of the spinal components. As a proposed approach, the predictions of the multi-body model under dynamic impact loading conditions, such as reaction forces at lumbar motion segments, were utilised not only to have a better understanding of the gross kinetics and kinematics of the human spine, but also to constitute the boundary conditions for the finite element models of the selected spinal components. This novel approach provides a versatile, cost effective and powerful tool to analyse the behaviour of the spine under various loading conditions which in turn helps to develop a better understanding of injury mechanisms.