31 innovations

Hövding airbag collar protects the head and eliminates helmet hair

Airbag collar, the no-helmet

Airbags have been cushioning drivers in accidents since the 1980’s and are now standard equipment on most new cars sold around the world. With cyclists and motorcyclists being much more vulnerable on the road than their car-enclosed cousins there have been a number of devices designed to bring the protection of an airbag to vehicles of the two-wheeled variety, including the Hit-Air jacket and Honda’s motorcycle airbag. The latest is an airbag collar aimed at cyclists called the Hövding that is worn around the neck and inflates to enclose the rider's head in the event of an accident.

The brainchild of industrial designers Anna Haupt and Terese Alstin, the Hövding (Swedish for Chieftain) is a collar worn around the neck that allows cyclists to feel the wind in their hair and cycle around town without suffering that most dreaded of afflictions – helmet hair. The device contains a folded airbag that fully inflates with helium in about 0.1 seconds thanks to a built-in gas generator. The air bag is triggered by accelerometers and gyrometers, which detect the “abnormal movement” of the rider in an accident.

Source: gizmag.comAdded: 2 July 2012