Digital Ergonomics: Virtual anthropometry for safe and ergonomic product and work system design
The research project "Digital Ergonomics: Virtual anthropometry for safe and ergonomic product and work system design" aims towards the synthesis of an anthropometrical data base for Germany which allows the update and adaptation to current social developments by using appropriate algorithms. The developed method plans to provide the multivariate generation, actualization and visualization of valid anthropometrical data. On this basis and with the use of new technologies, this approach fosters the design of safe and ergonomic products and work systems.
The methodological approach uses anthropometrical data in the form of high-resolution 3D bodyscans as well as existing datasets in a first step for a multivariate statistical data analysis. After a preliminary synthesis of anthropometrical data, an algorithm for their actualization will be developed that uses principal components for the adaptation to new conditions. The synthesized data and the algorithm will be validated based on further 3D bodyscans and demand-oriented data collection of small samples at the edge of the statistical distribution. The final steps comprise the definition of a standardized procedure for future data actualization and the concluding synthesis of an anthropometrical data set for Germany.
The project outcome will be used to address various topics within the human centered design of work places and sociotechnical work systems. It is relevant for defining and updating standards in anthropometry and the algorithm provides data actualization to current social trends. The use of web 2.0 - technologies and the visualization of synthesized data ensure the usability of data usage as well as the transparency in transferring the project results to research and development departments in academia and industry. A possible use case will be the modification and adaptation of digital human models that benefit from current anthropometric datasets in terms of the prospective planning of work places. Future in-house as well as external research projects will profit from the project results as well.
Unit 2.3 "Human Factors, Ergonomics"