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Bicycle Air Bag

An Air Bag for bicycles
  [vote for,

A small air bag, fitted into the cycle helmet that detects an impact and immediately inflates, preventing the neck from being twisted during the impact. Could also be used to replace some of the polystyrene in the top, hence making a lower profile (more stylish) helmet.

Since broken necks account for many injuries to two wheel warriors, this could save a lot of lives.

Incidentally, could be of more use to motorcyclists, where full face helmets are much more the norm, where this system could be more easily implemented.

The downside would be that the helmet would have to be inspected every year or so in order to ensure that the system still works.

Wezard, Mar 31 2003

Air Bag Helmet http://sheldonbrown.../airbag-helmet.html
Big stupid picture. [waugsqueke, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]

(?) Popoff Helmet http://www.halfbake...dea/Popoff_20Helmet
That’s what I get for searchin’ [Shz, Oct 04 2004]

half baked. http://www.popsci.c...6106,388119,00.html
another safety device designed to kill off the motorcyclists. [ato_de, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]

The "invisible" airbag http://www.hovding.com/
[theircompetitor, Aug 15 2012]


       Help me Mr. Wezard: I'm not sure I understand how an airbag on one's head would prevent the neck from being twisted, unless of course it's actually a stabilizing collar around the neck - which would have it's own set of problems but might lend itself to some rather interesting illustrations. :-)   

       I won't go in to my standard questions about the method and timing associated with detecting the impact.   

       Welcome to the halfbakery.
half, Mar 31 2003

       [half] that looked like one for the theosaurusoetry?   

       you could have been more obscure with //welcome to the halfbakery// though
po, Mar 31 2003

       That was a bit of a run on sentence. Go for it, [po]. I'm no good at poetry.
half, Mar 31 2003

       oh go on - surprise yourelf!
po, Mar 31 2003

       [wezard] what triggers this airbag? <bright light in face> answer the question and don't laugh or I will kick you somewhere sensitive </bright light in face>
po, Mar 31 2003

       Great link, waugs.
FarmerJohn, Mar 31 2003

       My understanding was that it was not wearing helmets that led to most serious injuries from bicycle accidents. Do you have any statistics on broken necks suffered by wearers of helments?   

       Or death from head injuries vs. broken necks?
DrCurry, Mar 31 2003

       Installation of seatbelts would also damage....Err......Work.
theThinker, Apr 01 2003

       Surely an inflatable neck-bag would work better. You need to brace the neck prior to impact.
pottedstu, Apr 01 2003

       I suspect if you detected the rider leaving the bike following a sudden deceleration/acceleration (depending on your perspective) you could trigger this thing. I think it would have to be part of a full motorbike helmet and be some sort of inflating neck brace to be effective.
dozyg, Apr 01 2003

       The helmets worn by most serious riders are up to the task of preventing all head injuries. Neck injuries are still a major concern, but a head bag won't even come close to helping. One major problem with this type of device is that it promotes rolling. Rolling after hitting the ground is the best way to break the arms, legs and necks of your favorite biker.
ato_de, Apr 01 2003

       How about a safety helmet that, in the event of a crash (method of trigger to be handily glossed over), deploys party-blower-style tubes in all directions from the helmet? Given enough inflating oomph, they will strike the kerb/car/wall a good 6 or 7 feet clear of the head, and begin to decelerate the wearer's head from that distance, rather than from the inch or two that an ordinary helmet will. Granted, it probably wouldn't prevent head / wall contact completely, but it would reduce the impact speed significantly. And loook funny.
friendlyfire, Apr 01 2003

       Thanks for the comments guys   

       I was thinking that it would kind of unroll down the back of the neck and then wrap around the neck like a big scarf while inflating. Hopefully, the pressures will be balanced enough that it will keep the neck rigidly straight and not allow it to bend. Very like [basie]'s suggestion   

       As for triggering mechanisms... Well, these things in cars take less than a microsecond to inflate, so an impact sensor (accelerometer) buried in the helmet should suffice??? would the compression in the padding in the helmet allow enough time though??? if not, it should be fairly simple to use some sort of distance sensor to sense approaching objects such as the floor.   

       [Po] My reactolite Super Ultra rapide protected me from the bright light.   

       I think this offers several advantages over a rigid neck brace for real world riders as a solid brace would hinder rear observations, and probably cause more accidents. Also, this wouldn't look so geeky
Wezard, Apr 01 2003

       Shirley the place for a cycle airbag should be on that nasty pointy bit where the handlebars meet the forks. This would prevent it from fitting neatly - 1. under my ribs and 2. between my legs.
nichpo, Sep 05 2003


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