Simon Fraser University:
Traumatic Brain Injuries are the biggest concern in sports today. Over the 2016 season, the NFL reported 244 diagnosed concussions. Modern helmets are designed, tested and certified for compressive forces only, neglecting one of the key contributing factors to head injury and concussions: the sharp twisting of the head. Collisions with the head are rarely normal impacts to the surface of the helmet; most come at an angle, causing both sharp twisting and compression of the brain. In 2010, Dr. Farid Golnaraghi established a lab called Head Injury Prevention Lab (the HIP lab) to investigate methods and technologies to mitigate the injurious effects of the sharp twisting of the brain. At the HIP lab after years of R&D, a micro-engineered membrane was invented, called Shield-X. Dr. Golnaraghi have used funding support from Canada’s Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) during the course of developing this exciting area of technology. In 2014, Shield-X Technology Inc., a start-up company based at SFU, was founded by Dr. Golnaraghi and his team to pursue commercialization of Shield-X membrane. Shield-X membrane disengages the impacting force from the head and results in significant reduction of the sharp twisting of the brain. What is next?! Well, the technology has been successfully tested by helmet manufacturers in the US and Canada; so soon you may see bicycle, hockey, ski, and football helmets equipped with Shield-X membrane.