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

Receiving folks to have on bicycle helmets can be tricky. Lots of cyclists complain that helmets are just much too sizzling. But EU-funded scientists are now creating the headgear a good deal cooler, making an additional incentive to have on it even though boosting protection.


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Specified an selection between protection and consolation, some buyers are most likely to pick consolation. The exact same is true when it will come to bicycle helmets, which are likely to feel much too warm immediately after extended or intense rides. The shape and non-optimised vents in the helmet as properly as the insulated liners normally finish up trapping a great deal much too a great deal heat.

People commuting to perform on a bicycle, for occasion, do not want a sweaty head and tussled hair due to the fact of wearing a helmet. Devoid of compromising protection, scientists were being challenged to make the helmets a good deal cooler to have on. The predicament was tackled by the EU-funded SMARTHELMET challenge which introduced jointly study and marketplace specialists to come up with a novel option.

‘SMARTHELMET challenge focused on developing helmets with lively thermal management, exactly where the ventilation can be managed autonomously relying on a rider’s cooling needs,’ states challenge coordinator Tiago Sotto Mayor of the College of Porto in Portugal.

By creating and making new helmets that are cooler and additional comfy, the hope is that quite a few additional will start out wearing them. Far more bikers indicate a additional lively populace and perhaps cleaner air for these who pick no for a longer time to commute by vehicle. Moreover, engineering that could help you save life is not only intelligent but is also socially responsible.

‘Moreover, helmets are passive objects with a fastened geometry and shape which can not adapt to riders’ different thermal environments and ventilation needs,’ states Sotto Mayor.

Cooler heads prevail

Conventional helmets provide only to secure a person’s head. So creating 1 that can also perception, forecast and adapt its ventilation to the cooling needs of a rider demands a good deal of knowledge.

For SMARTHELMET, this intended to start with bringing jointly a blend of specialists in biomechanics, electronics, thermo-regulation, engineering, production and innovation.

SMARTHELMET scientists then integrated electronics into bicycle helmets to permit genuine-time sensing of physiological and environmental parameters. These parameters provided heart price, temperature and relative humidity, which were being utilised to gauge a rider’s heat output and varying cooling needs.

‘We investigated strategies to adapt the helmet ventilation by way of adjustments in the features of its vents and linked their procedure with the rider’s thermo-regulation needs,’ states Sotto Mayor.

The conclusions were being then integrated into an progressive helmet principle to optimise ventilation by way of sensing, electronics and intelligent procedure. The principle also took in other aspects like bordering environmental situations and the cyclist’s level of actual physical action.

Outside of biking

LAZER, a firm that styles and sells bicycle helmets in additional than 65 nations around the world unfold in excess of five continents, was also associated in the challenge. Sotto Mayor describes the agency as a pure husband or wife to convert the study into progressive intelligent bicycle helmets.

Having said that, he also notes that the study has a large possible in other sectors as properly, such as merchandise such as motorbike helmets, industrial protecting headgear and even protecting garments.

‘The possible impact of the perform created in the SMARTHELMET challenge goes beyond the biking globe,’ he adds, noting that the challenge has also supplied young scientists a excellent possibility for palms-on experience across different sectors.