Meet Graham, Australia's new road safety model.
Victoria's Transport Accident Commission (TAC) has announced the creation of a humanoid model designed to withstand the force of car crashes and named him Graham.
The TAC has collaborated with Royal Melbourne Hospital’s trauma surgeon Christian Kenfield, crash investigation expert David Logan from the Monash University Accident Research Centre and world-renowned Melbourne artist Patricia Piccinini to produce the interactive sculpture that is said to display human vulnerability.
“Cars have evolved a lot faster than humans and Graham helps us understand why we need to improve every aspect of our roads system to protect ourselves from our own mistakes,” TAC CEO Joe Calafiore said in a statement Thursday.
Designed with bodily features that may be present if human beings evolved to withstand the forces involved in crashes, Graham has a thick, helmet-like skull with an in-built crumple zone to absorb impact forces and prevent damage to the brain.
The face is covered in fatty tissue to stop him from breaking any delicate bones, such as the cheekbones or nose, during impact. The neck is absent and his ribs join the skull to avoid common neck injuries.
Graham has been given what look like extra nipples but are actually meant to act like mini airbags in between the strong ribs, giving the heart and vital organs extra protection. The legs have been provided with extra joints to survive ankle and leg injuries in car accidents.
“He’s not patronizing, he’s not imposing, he’s open to us and the eyes are where the work is. It’s where you can really connect with him and empathize. If he was aggressive or belligerent or sort of patronizing we wouldn’t be able to do that. He’s very Australian, I think,” said sculptor Piccinini.
Graham is made out of fiberglass, silicone, resin and human hair and is currently on display at the State Library of Victoria until Aug. 8.
Immersive augmented reality technology can be used to look under Graham’s skin for more information about his unique features. Interactions with Graham and a 360 degree view of his body are available on the Meet Graham website.