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Stochastic distribution of the required coefficient of friction for level walking - an in-depth study

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This study investigated the stochastic distribution of the required coefficient of friction (RCOF) which is a critical element for estimating slip probability. Fifty participants walked under four walking conditions. The results of the Kolmogorov–Smirnov two-sample test indicate that 76% of the RCOF data showed a difference in distribution between both feet for the same participant under each walking condition; the data from both feet were kept separate. The results of the Kolmogorov–Smirnov goodness-of-fit test indicate that most of the distribution of the RCOF appears to have a good match with the normal (85.5%), log-normal (84.5%) and Weibull distributions (81.5%). However, approximately 7.75% of the cases did not have a match with any of these distributions. It is reasonable to use the normal distribution for representation of the RCOF distribution due to its simplicity and familiarity, but each foot had a different distribution from the other foot in 76% of cases.

Practitioner Summary: The stochastic distribution of the required coefficient of friction (RCOF) was investigated for use in a statistical model to improve the estimate of slip probability in risk assessment. The results indicate that 85.5% of the distribution of the RCOF appears to have a good match with the normal distribution.
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Keywords: friction demand; friction requirement; human locomotion; statistical distribution

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety, 71 Frankland RoadHopkinton,MA,01748, USA

Publication date: August 1, 2012

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