Researchers begin Army-wide anthropometric survey
November 4, 2010
- Data will be used to improve design and fit of clothing and individual equipment
- Army will measure 13,000 Soldiers over next 15 months
NATICK, Mass. -- An Army-wide Anthropometric Survey, called ANSUR II, will update the Army's anthropometric database used for human engineering-related applications.
The Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center is conducting the survey. NSRDEC is an element of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command.
Data collection for the ANSUR II survey began at Fort Hood, Texas, in early October, quickly gathering 94 standardized direct body measurements and three-dimensional surface scans of the whole body, head/face and feet from male and female Soldiers from 57 units.
"Fort Hood's support to this important Army effort has been outstanding," said Cynthia Blackwell, ANSUR II project leader.
The NSRDEC team will complete its data collection at Fort Hood Nov. 8, and begin measuring at Fort Bliss, Texas, Nov. 17. Other installations on the ANSUR II schedule over the next 15 months include National Guard and active Army units in seven states.
The ANSUR II survey, directed by the Department of the Army, will measure 13,000 Soldiers -- 5,000 from active duty, 1,000 aviators from any component, 2,000 from the Army Reserve and 5,000 from the National Guard. This collection of Soldier body measurements will represent the body sizes and shapes in today's Total Army and result in a database to improve the design and fit of clothing and individual equipment systems used by Soldiers in the near future.
The measuring team gathers biographical data, standardized body measurements and 3D surface scans of the whole body. Standardized body measurements include chest and waist circumferences, body breadths and depths, as well as specialized dimensions like functional leg lengths. The leg lengths are used to design cockpits and crew stations for combat vehicles, aircraft and other human system platforms.
The 3D body scanner captures contours and curvatures that will help design close-fitting items such as body armor. The 3D head and face scanner captures the shapes and curvatures needed to design helmets, goggles, face and respiratory protection. A foot scanner captures foot size and shape.
Army clothing, protective equipment, combat vehicles, aircraft and weapon systems are being designed and sized to fit their users based on statistical data from a representative sample. The last data collection, the first Army Anthropometric Survey, took place in 1988. In the past 20-plus years, the Army has noticed changes in the body sizes and types of its Soldiers, necessitating an update.
The ANSUR II database will establish design and sizing requirements, engineering solutions, digital models for vehicular crew stations, portable shelters and workstations, protective clothing and individual life support equipment, and military uniforms.
The NSRDEC ANSUR II team, including a research anthropologist, military personnel and civilian contractors, will visit locations across the country from October 2010 through January 2012. Selected Army units represent occupational cross-sections of the Army. Individuals from these units will be selected according to a stratified random sampling approach by age, sex and race. They will then be measured and scanned for the ANSUR II database.
"This study is absolutely crucial, not only to the design of Soldiers' uniforms and protective equipment, but also to the design of future combat vehicles," said Dr. Claire Gordon, NSRDEC senior research scientist in biological anthropology. "ANSUR II is the most comprehensive anthropometric data set to ever be collected by the Army and we truly appreciate the support from all levels of the Army's leadership."
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