Background and Objective: The purpose of this study was to investigate how differently various
form factors of subunits of shock absorption mat attenuate force from the elderly’s fall.
Methods: The study procedures were the following: (1) literature review: possible form factors
affecting the shock absorbing capacity were analyzed and synthesized from the review; (2) synthesis
of design criteria: criteria for force simulation were formulated based on the information from the
review; and (3) simulation: simulation of force from elderly’s fall absorbed by such mats with the
following control and independent variables that were analyzed and synthesized in the previous steps:
(control variables): 1) impact force, 2) physical properties of the rubber material; (independent
variables): 1) form of cross-section, 2) form of edges, 3) pattern of arrangement of subunits in the
structural layer, and 4) dimensional proportion of subunits.
Results and Conclusion: The simulation results show that the subunits with a circular-cross-section
and hourglass-like-edge form factors were the best at attenuating impact force. The best pattern of
subunit arrangement was a table arrangement. This study was a preliminary study to a design of
subunits of shock absorption mat. The results would be used in the next, more comprehensive study.
Multidisciplinary Design Research Program, Faculty of Architecture, King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology Ladkrabang, 10520 Bangkok, Thailand.
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