Dainese's airbag and the two biggest crashes of 2010

Dailies -

By

Rossi-D-Air-Airbag.jpgBoth Valentino Rossi and and Guy Martin are helping develop the Dainese
D-Air
airbag technology. But, while Rossi was equipped with an airbag
and credits it with limiting the extent of the injuries he suffered in
his huge Mugello highside, Guy was only equipped with data collection
equipment. >

Speaking from hospital after successful surgery to repair the fractured tibia and fibula in his right leg, Rossi said, “The airbag in my leathers worked very well and my helmet was just slightly scratched. I don’t have a single bruise! The problem was that I landed on my leg, and it was stuck under my body. If I had landed on my back it would have been different.”

Sadly, Guy Martin, who’s still in hospital receiving treatment for broken ribs, bruised lungs and two fractured vertebrae following his explosive 150mph TT crash wasn’t wearing D-Air this year. Why? He’s collecting data that will help Dainese develop its new D-Air road system.

D-Air track, as worn by Rossi, Lorenzo and, during last year’s TT, Guy Martin, is ready for market and will be going on-sale when Dainese releases its 2011 collection. Now that the track project is wrapped up, Dainese has begun development of an airbag system for road riders. Because the road presents a much more complicated environment to motorcyclists than a race track, D-Air road needs to process and react to a much larger data set. To help build that data set, Guy was fitted with a sophisticated new array of sensors and a computer to gather the data as he lapped the Isle of Man. The data generated by his crash would have been enormously helpful to development of the D-Air road, unfortunately it was lost as the computer collecting it burned when Guy’s CBR1000RR burst into flames.

Daines-D-Air-Suit.jpgUnlike less sophisticated systems already on the market that rely on a lanyard between bike and rider to trigger release of an airbag, Dainese’s setup and the similar Alpinestars TechAir instead rely on multiple sensors that detect acceleration in different planes at different areas on the riders’ body. If the suit’s computer determines that the data is saying “crash” then it inflates the airbag. This is a far more desirable method than the lanyard as it eliminates the possibility for accidental airbag deployment, works even if the rider doesn’t fully separate from the bike in a crash and deploys sooner during the accident to better protect the rider. As you can see, D-Air and TechAir both inflate to protect the shoulders, collarbone and neck; all uniquely vulnerable areas.

  • http://muthalovin.com the_doctor

    Reading “bruised lungs” just makes me cringe a bit. Wes, you going to do a “field test” when it comes out?

    • http://Http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Yep.

  • Chris Y.

    Hope you don’t break your arm again…

  • shinigami

    “works even if the rider doesn’t fully separate from the bike in a crash”

    Perhaps that is a good thing- perhaps not. Who knows if this could prevent a save that might otherwise be achievable?

    • http://www.dainese.com DaineseDan

      I believe Wes is referring to more of a “tumbling/sliding with the bike” scenario vs. a near-highside that can be saved. The algorythms in the suit’s computer account for situations like that.

      • shinigami

        Yes, I can see where that would be the case. Perhaps the luddite in me doesn’t like this concept of something doing the thinking for us ;)

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Yeah, this isn’t going to prevent any saves, but imagine sliding down the road with your leg stuck under the bike, you’d still want the airbag to inflate. This will, lanyards won’t. Watch the video, even inflated the ‘bag isn’t going to interfere with bike control.

  • Gary Sideburn

    Guy isn’t in hospital any longer, but he’s still in some discomfort.

  • shinigami

    It seems to me the current iteration is a clear improvement over the “external bag” of the previous system. I should have watched the video before commenting, my experience with this in its previous iteration colored my remark.

  • vic

    what if they made a switch somewhere on the suit/gloves,it can still be triggered accidentaly but sure beats a lanyard thingy

    • vic

      or better yet a wireless suppository trigger that can fit in your arse hole .it can be set off by either shit or enough pressure to crack a walnut which will cover the basic reactions that people have when they are about to crash
      i’m just sayin

      • Grant Ray

        That’s just gross.

      • Max

        GENIUS!

  • Max

    …On a side note, I don’t see why the same technology couldn’t be made to fit in your pants.
    The same padding that gives Head and neck support may also prevent broken legs.