Document Type


Date of Award

Fall 1-31-2016

Degree Name

Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering - (M.S.)


Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

N. Chandra

Second Advisor

Bryan J. Pfister

Third Advisor

Maciej Skotak


Many laboratories around the world are conduct shockwave blast injury tests on rodents to simulate blast traumatic brain injury (TBI). Each of these laboratories has different techniques for creating the shockwave blasts as well as positioning the rats. There is no device to determine whether or not the rodent animal models actually experiences a true blast wave in a given set up. This device was developed as a method for verifying rodents undergoing true shockwave blasts through biometrics, instrumentation and the basic biomechanical responses a rodent experiences during such tests. Since the goal of shockwave blast testing is to replicate the live-fire conditions, it is important to have loads of biomechanical authenticity.

A rodent test device (RTD) is developed to simulate the loading conditions of rats under shockwave blasts. At the most basic level the RTD is the same size and shape as a Sprawgue-Dawley rat so that it can be easily placed into a given laboratory set up that conducts shockwave blast research on rodents. Fidelity to the shape, size, weight and fundamental mechanics of a rat were important considerations in the development process given the range of diversity found in different laboratories.