Frounfelker named NDIA Tester of the Year
February 21, 2011
Patricia Frounfelker was recently announced as receiving the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA) 2010 Tester of the Year award for government civilians. She will be recognized for her achievements at the 27th annual National Test and Evaluation Conference in Tampa, Fla. on March 16, 2011.
Dr. Paul Tanenbaum, director of ARL's Survivability/Lethality Analysis Directorate, noted the significance of Frounfelker's award "(Receiving the Tester of the Year award) is a pretty big feat," he said.
Frounfelker is a general engineer in SLAD's Warfighter Survivability Branch, where she has established herself as a leading expert in analyzing and characterizing the survivability of U.S. Soldiers against a wide variety of injury mechanisms, including penetration, accelerative loading, blast overpressure, burns, and toxic gas.
In 2010, Frounfelker developed a novel methodology to quantify the collateral injury to dismounted troops and non-combatants from reactive armor and active protection systems. Frounfelker identified areas of concern, which then prompted the Army to change how dismounted troops operate around ground vehicles. Her methodology is now used nationally and is under consideration for international use in assessing the effects of these types of potential hazards.
In addition, Frounfelker conducted research to upgrade the injury criteria as well as the methodologies used to assess injuries due to accelerative loading from under-vehicle blasts. She provided recommendations for an interim methodology that increased the resolution of predictions of injury. Frounfelker is working with the U.S. Army Aeromedical Research Lab (USAARL) and U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) on a joint effort to advance experimental studies using human subjects in the examination of injuries due to military blast.
Finally, Frounfelker assessed crew casualties for Army and Marine Corps systems undergoing live-fire testing. She was the principal crew casualty analyst for a wide range of munitions and vehicles, including Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) Alternative Warhead, Non Line of Sight-Launch System (NLOS-LS), Scorpion, and High-Mobility Multi-Purpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV).
Frounfelker's achievements in identifying and assessing injuries that can occur in or near combat vehicles has directly benefited U.S. Soldiers. Her ability to successfully handle multiple high-priority efforts is commendable, and her technical efforts have allowed the Army to modify vehicles before they're fielded, thus better protecting our Warfighters.