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Dr. Bertil Aldman (1925 – 1998)

Bertil Aldman, born in 1925 in Kumla, died 13th of October,1998 in Göteborg, was a Swedish medical doctor as well as a Doctor of Philosophy.

Son of wholesaler Joel Aldman, he was medicine licentiate at Karolinska institutet in Stockholm in 1953. He had different medical appointments during 1950–63 and in 1963 he became Doctor at Karolinska Institutet, specialized in anesthesiology. He was docent in medical road research that Karolinska Institutet 1963–72.He was professor atthe State Traffic Security 1964-71 and the Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institutein 1971-72. In 1972-91 he was professor of the Traffic Safety department, later to be renamed to the department of Injury Prevention at Chalmers University of Technology. He is internationally well known for the founding of IRCOBI (the International Research Council on the Biomechanics of Impact), ground braking research on seat belts and air bags for passenger cars, the development of the world’s first rear-facing car seat,for which he was awarded the KTH Grand Prize 1992, the research of the injury mechanism in Whip Lash exposures etc.

Aldman was particularly interested in the response of the chest to crash forces and devised an experiment in which an anaesthetized pig was placed on an oscillating table above which was an x‐ray tube and below which was the film. Contrast dye was injected into the aorta. The amplitude of the movements of the thoracic organs was compared with the amplitude and frequencies of the oscillating table. This work anticipated the viscous criterion.

Aldman’s analysis of some of his early results showed that a systematic error was introduced by stretching of the high-speedfilm and thus caution had to be exercised in the accuracy of the results. The main part of his doctoral dissertation involved seven full scale car‐to‐barrier crash tests in which several types of seat belt were used under various crash conditions. This involved designing and building a crash test dummy with associated instrumentation issues. The results outlined the best characteristics and geometry of the restraints tested and demonstrated the superiority of the lap and shoulder belt system compared to the other types. Bertil contributed frequently to the proceedings of the IRCOBI, Stapp and AAAM conferences. An invited lecture at the Annual IRCOBI Conference is named after him.

Selected publications

  1.   Michelson, I., Aldman, B., Tourin, B., & Mitchell, J. (1964). Dynamic Tests of Restraining Devices for Automobile    Passengers. Public Health Rep, 79, 125-135. (Link).

  2.  Michelson, I., Aldman, B., Tourin, B., & Mitchell, J. (1964). Dynamic Tests of Restraining Devices for Automobile    Passengers. Public Health Rep, 79, 125-135. (Full text).

  3. Aldman, B. (1966). A Protective Seat for Children - Experiments with a Safety Seat for Children between One and Six. In Proc. of 8th Stapp Car Crash Conference, 320–328. Detroit: SAE. (Link) (Abstract).

  4. Aldman, B., Åsberg, A., 1968. Impact amplification in European compacts, Proceedings of the 12th Stapp Car Crash Conference, 387-401.Detroit: SAE. (Link)  (Abstract).

  5. Aldman, B., Thorson, J. (1971) Motorization and traffic mortality in Sweden. Accident Analysis and Prevention 3, 215-221. (Link)  (Absract).

  6. Aldman, B., Andersson, A., & Saxmark, O. (1974). Possible effects of airbag inflation on a standing child. Proceedings: American Association for Automotive Medicine Annual Conference, 18, 15-29. (Abstract).

  7. Aldman, B., Lundell, B., Thorngren, L., & Turbell, T. (1978). Helmet attenuation of the head response in oblique impacts to the ground.Proc3rd International IRCOBI Conference, 118-128). Lyon: IRCOBI. (Full Text).

  8. Aldman, B., Gustafsson, H., Nygren, A., & Astrand, I. (1982). Motorcycle helmets: Ventilation. Journal of Traffic Medicine, 10(2), 28-30. (Abstract).

  9. Aldman, Bertil (1986). An analytical approach to the impact biomechanics of head and neck injury." In Proceedings: American Association for Automotive Medicine Annual Conference, 439-54. American Association for Automotive Medicine. (Abstract).

  10. Aldman, Bertil, R. Zac, R. Bouquet, D. Cesari, and J. Kajzer (1986). A new dummy for pedestrian test." In International Conference on Enhanced Safety of Vehicles, SAE Paper 856031,10 p. Warrendale, PA: SAE. (Link) (Abstract).

  11. Aldman, B., Tingvall, C. (1987). A crash severity indicator and its usefulness. Proceedings International IRCOBI Conference.182-186. Bron: IRCOBI. (Full Text) (Abstract).

  12. Aldman, B.(1998). Why and how IRCOBI came into existence.Proceedings 1998 IRCOBI Conference,Gothenburg, 1-6. Bron: International Research Council on the Biomechanics of Injury. (Full Text).

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