Samsung develop headgear to detect concussion in athletes

The device is set to help players and staff monitor for concussions

BY Adrian Collins 17:51 Tuesday 22 March 2016, 17:51 22 Mar 2016

Image: Samsung Australia

Samsung has developed a new product that will help to detect concussion in athletes who play contact sports. 

The brainBAND, as Samsung have dubbed it, is the result of the Launching People initiative, which brings together experts from different fields to solve a problem. 

Sticking to the mantra that two heads are better than one, they brought industrial designer Braden Wilson and neuroscientist Alan Pearce together to tackle the problem of concussion in sport.

The device takes readings on the severity of the hit sustained by the player, and then relays that information to a medic on the sideline, the team coach and the referee.

LED lights on the back of the headband itself indicate the force of the impact also, by glowing yellow, orange or red.

Speaking about the design, Wilson said that the decision to make it a headband, and not headgear was an important one: "We didn't want it to look like a protective device because what we are doing is collecting information, not protecting in the helmet sense. Headgear can give a false sense of security. The headgear may soften the blow of an impact but it won't stop the brain moving in the skull".

He added that they were also conscious that it "would be worn with pride because we really don't want to target players as showing weakness, that is a concern we have with traditional head gear".

Isreal Folau, the spokesperson for the project, said that it would be a key development in making the game safer.

"When I have seen [concussions] happen, the damage comes after. It might be months or years after the actual event, which is really dangerous and you can't get a read on it at that certain time.

Image: Francois Mori / AP/Press Association Images

"If you can raise more awareness around how serious concussion is, it will make more players consider not going back on the field to continue playing".

So far, only 10 prototypes have been made, but Samsung told Mashable Australia that they have given a grant to Wilson and Pearce to continue their research and exploring the possibility of making a version that could be put into production.

Via Mashable

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