June 21, 2024

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Making bicycle helmets cool to wear – Information Centre – Research & Innovation

Obtaining people today to wear bicycle helmets can be tricky. Numerous cyclists complain that helmets are just way too hot. But EU-funded researchers are now earning the headgear a good deal cooler, building an added incentive to wear it though boosting protection.


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Presented an option amongst protection and comfort, some consumers are likely to select comfort. The identical is real when it arrives to bicycle helmets, which tend to feel way too warm just after extensive or intensive rides. The form and non-optimised vents in the helmet as properly as the insulated liners often conclude up trapping a lot way too a lot heat.

People commuting to function on a bike, for instance, do not want a sweaty head and tussled hair since of wearing a helmet. Without compromising protection, researchers have been challenged to make the helmets a good deal cooler to wear. The dilemma was tackled by the EU-funded SMARTHELMET venture which brought jointly study and field professionals to appear up with a novel option.

‘SMARTHELMET venture concentrated on creating helmets with active thermal administration, the place the air flow can be managed autonomously dependent on a rider’s cooling requires,’ states venture coordinator Tiago Sotto Mayor of the College of Porto in Portugal.

By planning and building new helmets that are cooler and additional comfortable, the hope is that quite a few additional will commence wearing them. Extra bikers suggest a additional active population and perhaps cleaner air for people who select no for a longer time to commute by car. Moreover, engineering that could conserve life is not only smart but is also socially liable.

‘Moreover, helmets are passive objects with a preset geometry and form which can not adapt to riders’ distinct thermal environments and air flow requires,’ states Sotto Mayor.

Cooler heads prevail

Normal helmets serve only to guard a person’s head. So earning 1 that can also sense, forecast and adapt its air flow to the cooling requires of a rider calls for a good deal of knowledge.

For SMARTHELMET, this intended initially bringing jointly a mix of professionals in biomechanics, electronics, thermo-regulation, engineering, manufacturing and innovation.

SMARTHELMET researchers then integrated electronics into bicycle helmets to permit real-time sensing of physiological and environmental parameters. These parameters provided heart amount, temperature and relative humidity, which have been applied to gauge a rider’s heat output and various cooling requires.

‘We investigated methods to adapt the helmet air flow by means of alterations in the options of its vents and joined their operation with the rider’s thermo-regulation requires,’ states Sotto Mayor.

The results have been then integrated into an progressive helmet concept to optimise air flow by means of sensing, electronics and smart operation. The concept also took in other variables like surrounding environmental problems and the cyclist’s amount of actual physical exercise.

Outside of cycling

LAZER, a company that styles and sells bicycle helmets in additional than 65 nations around the world unfold more than five continents, was also associated in the venture. Sotto Mayor describes the firm as a purely natural associate to turn the study into progressive smart bicycle helmets.

On the other hand, he also notes that the study has a large possible in other sectors as properly, such as goods these kinds of as motorbike helmets, industrial protecting headgear and even protecting clothing.

‘The possible impression of the function designed in the SMARTHELMET venture goes further than the cycling earth,’ he provides, noting that the venture has also given young researchers a fantastic prospect for arms-on expertise across distinct sectors.