Wearing a motorcycle helmet is supposed to be better than not wearing one, but there is a potentially-lethal injury that helmets actually cause: rotational injury, AKA intracerebral shearing.
When your helmet hits the road, its shell hangs up on the pavement and causes the helmet to twist around. A rider’s head twists with the helmet so quickly that the brain can’t catch up fast enough as it moves 15 milliseconds after the skull around it. The result is the shearing of nerves and blood vessels, which can kill you.
Lazer Helmets has created something they claim reduces the risk of this sort of injury by 70%. It’s helmets with skin, “SuperSkin®,” they call it. The layer on the outside of the helmet acts exactly like the scalp does in the human head. By sliding on the shell to counteract shearing, it limits rotational injury.
The British company Philips Helmets Ltd. spent 15 years developing the SuperSkin® technology. They sent helmets to the Louis Pasteur University of Strasbourg for independent testing, who determined that they reduced the risk of intracerebral shearing by 67.5%. The skin can stretch to up to eight times its length. It is fixed to the helmet shell and resting on a gel-lubricating mattress, and behaves exactly as the human scalp does on the skull. Cool.
Belgium’s Lazer Helmets licensed the technology and now offers it on three of their models. While they have exclusive rights to its use on motorcycle helmets, designer Dr. Ken Philips hopes it will also be picked up for cycling and other applications.
Check out Lazer and read a lot more about their product and how it just might save your life.
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