MTEC understands the importance of sharing technical requirements as soon as possible with both members and to potential consortium members in order to allow the maximum possible time to prepare, team, and identify both public and private solicitation sponsors. Draft Request for Project Proposals will be shared via email upon request and this website. Understand that this information is draft in nature and changes could occur prior to publication of final documents. For specific Request for Project Information or Request for Project Proposal inquiries, please direct your correspondence to the following contacts:
- Questions concerning contractual, cost or pricing should be directed to the MTEC Contracts Manager, Ms. Lisa Fisher, email@example.com
- Technical related questions should be directed to the MTEC Director of Research, Dr. Lauren Palestrini, Ph.D., firstname.lastname@example.org
- Questions concerning membership should be directed to Ms. Stacey Lindbergh, MTEC Executive Director, email@example.com
- All other questions should be directed to Ms. Kathy Zolman, MTEC Program Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org
Incapacitation Prediction for Readiness in Expeditionary Domains: an Integrated Computational Tool (I-PREDICT) Force Health Protection Future Naval Capability (FNC) Project
The Medical Technology Enterprise Consortium (MTEC) is excited to post this pre-announcement for a Request for Project Proposals (RPP), expected to be released in mid-December 2017. This RPP will focus on the initial phase of acquiring a biofidelic in silico human body model to be used for the predictive modeling of injuries occurring in response to a variety of military hazards. The value of the model lies in its expected capability to accurately predict injury types and severities as well as anatomical locations. Injury predictions will be used in the design of personal protective equipment, platforms (e.g. vehicles, structures), and medical requirements and response planning. This initial phase will be limited to development of a finite element computational model of the human thorax (and potentially abdomen) and experimentation to determine biofidelic tissue constitutive properties. The use-case for the initial phase will be behind armor blunt trauma, as a representative example of biofidelic whole-body modeling of responses to a variety of military hazards.
The MTEC mission is to assist the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (USAMRMC) and other DoD research funding organizations by providing cutting-edge technologies and effective materiel life cycle management to transition medical solutions to industry that protect, treat, and optimize Warfighters’ health and performance across the full spectrum of military operations. MTEC is a biomedical technology consortium collaborating with multiple government agencies under a 10-year renewable Other Transaction Agreement (OTA), Agreement No. W81XWH-15-9-0001, with the U.S. Army Medical Research Acquisition Activity (USAMRAA). MTEC is currently recruiting a broad and diverse membership that includes representatives from large businesses, small businesses, “nontraditional” government contractors, academic research institutions, and not-for-profit organizations.
Overarching goal of the of the I-PREDICT FNC: Injury and incapacitation estimates for combat scenarios are currently educated guesses at best. Estimates may be based on simplified injury risk thresholds on hazard parameters such as pressure, stress, strain, or force applied to an organ or tissue. Increasingly, such knowledge is incorporated into computational simulations that can be run repeatedly to explore variations in hazards and physiologic responses in order to assign statistical confidence to predictions of injury risk. Current modeling and simulation methods for predicting injury can be inaccurate, regional rather than whole-body, not validated appropriately, and may not be based upon physiologically or operationally relevant loading conditions. Injury prevention standards are needed to protect Warfighters from injuries based on a scientific understanding of hazardous conditions typical of military service, and of the vulnerability of tissues, organs, and bodily functions to those hazards. Such standards will inform the design tradespaces of personal protective equipment (PPE), safer vehicles, and safe-to-operate weapons systems; as well as tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) to protect against injury. Injury prediction models will also allow improved estimation of casualty types, rates, and severity, which in turn will predict individual and unit readiness during operations and medical treatment requirements. The development of a highly biofidelic finite element model of the whole human body is needed to inform such applications.
The overarching goal of the of the I-PREDICT FNC is to provide a TRL 6 in silico “skin-in” integrated finite element computational model of the Warfighter’s body to be used for injury prevention and treatment, medical response planning, and equipment design including tradeoff analysis among design parameters, validation, and testing. The I-PREDICT FNC will provide an integrated biomechanical response model of the Warfighter using biofidelic constitutive tissue properties, and associated pre- and post-processing tools that will predict injury and near term functional incapacitation (reduction in the ability to move, shoot, and/or communicate) in response to specific military hazards, in priority order of: 1) blunt impact/accelerative loading and 2) blast pressure effects. The model will be based on experimentally derived material properties of human tissues at strain rates equivalent to those experienced during military hazards, and will be validated with data on regional and whole-body mechanics. I-PREDICT will include variable anthropometry (e.g., differences in size, weight, somatotype, and age), variable posture, variable biofidelity, and gender differences in modeling. The resulting injury and readiness estimates will be incorporated into medical response planning and preliminary design and testing of equipment, resulting in cost savings and more thoroughly vetted products that make principled considerations for engineering tradeoffs (e.g., weight of body armor vs. mobility).
Focus of Upcoming RPP: The initial RPP will solicit experimental and modeling proposals to advance the state of the art in prediction of injury due to behind armor blunt trauma (BABT) of the thorax (and potentially abdomen and lower back), as an initial focused use case representing an operational military need. A previously developed computational model of the torso will be made available to performers as a reference implementation, and as a baseline model subject to improvement. A performer will be expected to adapt the model through parameterization using new or alternatively sourced constitutive response data, validating BABT experiments resulting in kinematic and/or stress/strain data, and/or injury biomechanics data. Time and funding permitting, it is expected that resulting model will be morphable to represent both male and female Warfighters across a range of sizes (5th to 95th percentile body size). Validating experiments of interest should prioritize high-powered antipersonnel rounds to the anterior and/or posterior surfaces of the torso. Any new experiments should provide clear differentiation from prior literature, pointing out specific knowledge gaps and specific improvements to biofidelity of thoracic modeling in a BABT context. In addition to updated constitutive properties, it is expected that the model developer will provide additional updates to the reference implementation to support biofidelity in a high-energy behind armor blunt trauma use case.
Potential for Follow-On Work: Additional experimentation and modeling may be solicited in future funding years to continue to build an integrated finite element computational model of the entire Warfighter’s body to be used for injury prevention and treatment, medical response planning, and equipment design including tradeoff analysis among design parameters, validation, and testing.
Funding and Period of Performance: The U.S. Government (USG) currently has available approximately $850,000 for Fiscal Year (FY) 18. The period of performance is expected to start on March 1, 2018 (subject to change). A near-complete prototype must be ready for delivery to the Government by July 31, 2018. Awardees will have until September 30, 2018 to make final minor improvements to the prototype.
Administrative Comments: The RPP will be posted to the MTEC website and FedBiz Opps to notify interested parties. MTEC membership is required for the submission of a full proposal in response to this upcoming MTEC RPP. To join MTEC, please visit http://mtec-sc.org/how-to-join/
For inquiries regarding this pre-announcement, please direct your correspondence to the following contacts:
- Technical questions – Dr. Lauren Palestrini, PhD, MTEC Director of Research: email@example.com
- Administrative questions – Ms. Kathy Zolman, MTEC Program Manager: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Membership questions – Ms. Stacey Lindbergh, MTEC Executive Director: email@example.com
Click here to download the Pre-Announcement: I-PREDICT_MTEC Pre-Announcement_12-12-2017_FINAL