Author ORCID Identifier

https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1517-5543

Year of Publication

2020

Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME)

Document Type

Master's Thesis

College

Engineering

Department

Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Suzanne Weaver Smith

Abstract

Rotational falls are the leading cause of death and serious injury in the equestrian sport of eventing. Previous studies to develop safety devices used physical models representing one or at most several physical situations leading to different designs and no common understanding. In this thesis, a statistical ensemble model is developed and applied to generate and evaluate 10,000 different situations that might potentially lead to rotational falls. For accurate statistical representation of the horse and rider inertia distributions, measurements of over 400 training or competing horses and riders were recorded and incorporated. Video was recorded of 218 total competitors approaching 10 different jumps on cross country courses in competitions ranging from Preliminary to CCI5*, yielding jump configuration angles for different fence types. Combining information for these, among 26 total variables, a statistical ensemble simulation using impulse momentum physics identifies conditions for rotation and defines design criteria for future general and situation-specific jumps and safety devices. A Jump Safety Quality Index is also devised to represent the benefit of an activating fence design for mitigating rotational falls versus the detriment and competition penalties of false activation.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

https://doi.org/10.13023/etd.2020.173

Funding Information

University of Kentucky Department of Mechanical Engineering 2018-2020

United States Eventing Association 2017-2018

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