Blast-Test Dummy to Measure Explosive Shockwaves For U.S. Military

Apr 14, 2015 02:30 PM EDT | Matt Mercuro

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Manikins have been used as stand-ins for people to study cars, trucks and fireproof clothing. Now they're being asked to help keep our soldiers safe.

The U.S. Army has awarded Diversified Technical Systems (DTS) an exclusive contract to create the first ever instrumented tested dummy for blast testing.

The project, called the "Warrior Injury Assessment Manikin," will help the U.S. Army measure how explosions from an "improvised explosive device" outside a military vehicle affects soldiers riding inside, according to a DTS release.

"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, in a company statement. "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."

Yes, WIAMan's appearance may look like your standard frontal or side impact crash-test pal, but it's very different. The Department of Defense will be able to put WIAMan to work during live fire tests and evaluation for updated ground vehicles to study interiors, shock-absorbing seats and improved uniforms for soldiers.  

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