Volume 6, Issue 1 (January 2009)
Development of a new methodology capable of characterizing the contribution of a controlled venting system to impact attenuation in chamber structures for head protection
Currently, ice hockey helmet technologies are based mainly around foam energy absorbers. There is a need in the head protection industry for improved designs, capable of protecting the brain under a wide range of impact conditions. Air chambers are new, thin-walled collapsible energy absorber structures which have the potential to replace or to be used in conjunction with current helmet technology. The chambers consist of several engineering parameters, each of which needs to be examined to understand its mechanical response under impacts. This study was designed to investigate a new methodology capable of investigating the air venting system. This research thereby analyzed the role the chamber’s controlled air release device plays in managing impact energy. The results demonstrated that, as the air chamber approaches the critical failure region, the air released though the controlled vent can prevent larger peak forces. This research identified that an engineered thin-walled collapsible chamber does use air as a mechanism to absorb impacting force.