Computational simulation of the mechanical response of brain tissue under blast loading

Kaveh Laksari, Soroush Assari, Benjamin Seibold, Keya Sadeghipour, Kurosh Darvish

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


In the present study, numerical simulations of nonlinear wave propagation and shock formation in brain tissue have been presented and a new mechanism of injury for blast-induced neurotrauma (BINT) is proposed. A quasilinear viscoelastic (QLV) constitutive material model was used that encompasses the nonlinearity as well as the rate dependence of the tissue relevant to BINT modeling. A one-dimensional model was implemented using the discontinuous Galerkin finite element method and studied with displacement- and pressure-input boundary conditions. The model was validated against LS-DYNA finite element code and theoretical results for specific conditions that resulted in shock wave formation. It was shown that a continuous wave can become a shock wave as it propagates in the QLV brain tissue when the initial changes in acceleration are beyond a certain limit. The high spatial gradient of stress and strain at the shock front cause large relative motions at the cellular scale at high temporal rates even when the maximum stresses and strains are relatively low. This gradient-induced local deformation may occur away from the boundary and is proposed as a contributing factor to the diffuse nature of BINT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)459-472
Number of pages14
JournalBiomechanics and Modeling in Mechanobiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 15 2015


  • Blast loading
  • Brain tissue
  • Discontinuous Galerkin method
  • Hyperelasticity
  • Injury biomechanics
  • Quasilinear viscoelasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Mechanical Engineering


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