R. Matthew Brach

R. Matthew Brach, Ph.D., P.E.


Manager of Illinois Operations

Dr. Matthew Brach brings over 20 years of automotive engineering experience including time in automotive manufacturing and in the consulting business. His areas of technical specialization include vehicle impact analysis, vehicle dynamics, automotive accident reconstruction, railway grade crossing crashes, and automotive safety. Dr. Brach has analyzed and reconstructed crashes that involved commercial vehicles, light vehicles, motorcycles, bicycles, pedestrians, off-road vehicles, locomotives and trains, as well as crashes involving a horse and buggy. These projects have also involved aspects of human factors, visibility issues, and mechanical design issues. His approach to vehicle crash analysis and reconstruction involves the latest software and simulation tools, as well as data acquisition tools.

Over the course of his career, Dr. Brach has authored numerous technical papers and articles, primarily in the field of crash reconstruction, but also including topics in the area of vibrations and acoustics. He was a co-instructor of the SAE Accident Reconstruction Methods Continuing Education Seminar for more than a decade. He is co-author of the book, Vehicle Accident Analysis and Reconstruction Methods, which is now in its second edition.

His experience prior to joining ESi includes engineering positions with Ford Motor Company and IIT Research Institute. He was also an adjunct professor of Mechanical Engineering at Lawrence Technological University.

He earned a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Michigan State University, an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame. He is also the Manager of Illinois Operations for the ESi office in Aurora, Illinois.


  • Addition of Tire Forces into Low-Speed Bumper-to-Bumper Crash Reconstruction Simulation Models, SAE Technical Paper 2024-01-2479, SAE International, March 2024
  • SAE International’s Dictionary of Vehicle Accident Reconstruction and Automotive Safety, SAE International, October 2023
  • Validation of the Han-Brach Vehicle-Pedestrian Impact Mechanics Model, Collision Magazine, March 2020
  • Sensitivity Analysis of Various Vehicle Dynamic Simulation Software Packages Using Design of Experiments (DOE), SAE Technical Paper 2020-01-0639, January 2020
  • Sensitivity Analysis of Simulated Postimpact Vehicle Motion Using Design of Experiments (DOE), SAE Technical Paper 2018-011-0526, January 2018
  • Nonlinear Optimization in Vehicular Crash Reconstruction, SAE International, January 2015
  • Analysis of High-Speed Sideswipe Collisions Using Data From Small Overlap Crash Tests, SAE International , January 2014
  • Uncertainty of CRASH3 ΔV and Energy Loss for Frontal Collisions , SAE International, January 2012
  • The Tire-Force Ellipse (Friction Ellipse) and Tire Characteristics, SAE International, January 2011
  • Vehicle Accident Analysis and Reconstruction Methods, SAE International, 2nd Edition, January 2011
  • Insertion Loss: Train & Light-Vehicle Horns and Railroad-Crossing Sound Levels, Proceedings of Meetings on Acoustics, January 2009
  • Interson Loss: Train & Light-Vehicle Horns and Railroad-Crossing Sounds Levels, National Highway-Rail Grade Crossing Safety Training Conference, January 2009
  • See CV for further publications

Project Experience

ESi's expertise spans dozens of industries and specializations organized across several practice groups, each staffed by dozens of in-house experts with the technical knowledge, hands-on expertise, and courtroom experience required to execute projects for and with our clients from start to finish.

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