Italian design company Momodesign has developed a graphene-coated motorcycle helmet that promises to increase rider protection and enhance user comfort.
Created in partnership with the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT), the helmet is part of the EU’s €1bnGraphene Flagship project, billed as Europe’s biggest ever research initiative. A graphene coating on the shell allows better distribution of impact force, making the helmet less susceptible to damage, even in high temperatures.
“I started to read publications about graphene with curiosity and interest,” said Marco Cattaneo, president of Momodesign, who claimed he was looking to “improve products in which safety is the most important aspect.”
As well as safety, graphene’s excellent thermal conducive properties helps dissipate heat quickly across the helmet. This not only protects the inner materials from degradation caused by heat, but also provides a more comfortable user experience.
Application of the graphene coating takes place on an existing production line in northern Italy. Momodesign is planning an initial run of 3,000 helmets, which will be on sale at the end of the year for around £200. The journey from concept to production took 18 months.
Andrea Ferrari, chair of the Graphene Flagship Management Panel and the Flagship’s Science and Technology Officer said: “This is an excellent example of what is at the core of the Graphene Flagship mission: to take graphene, related layered materials and hybrids from a state of raw potential to a point where they can revolutionise multiple industries, with a manifold return on the European investment, both in terms of technological innovation and economic exploitation.
“Over the next few years we will see more and more products enabled by graphene reaching the market, thanks to the support of the Graphene Flagship.”