FIBIS

Brain Injury Safety

FIBIS is an add on to helmets that helps increase brain injury safety in the NFL. FIBIS detects the amount of head impact the player receives and indicates the quantity of force in real time. This gives the sport visual data to help prevent unsafe clearance that leads to fatal concussions and CTE.

Date

Spring 2018

CATEGORY

Research, Design, Technology

99% of studied brains from deceased NFL players were found to have CTE.

In a study published in 2017, neuropathologist Dr. Ann McKee examined the donated brains of 202 former football players. CTE was identified in 3 out of 14 high school players (21%), 48 out of 53 college players (91%), and 110 out of 111 NFL players (99%). 

What causes CTE? Concussions and head injuries.

Since football is an extremely high contact sport, players often sustain over 1000 head impacts in a single season. In 2017, these impacts caused 281 concussions. This is the highest number of concussions in a year since the league began sharing this data.

For years, the NFL downplayed the risk of the sport and the health of its players. So who is looking out for them?

53% of NFL players do not think coaches and team doctors have their best interest in mind when it comes to health and safety.

47% of diagnosed concussions were only discovered due to players reporting their own symptoms

This means that players had to rely solely on themselves to acknowledge symptoms to pull out of the game and get checked.

How can we help increase brain injury safety in the NFL?

Ideation & Development Sketches

Understanding existing safety gear, the physics behind concussions, and developing FIBIS.

How the FIBIS Add On Works

Programming + Tech

The plates are programmed to correlate an input of force to an output of lights on a scale. The higher the force, higher the lights on the scale.

* The force-to-light correspondence programmed here used lower resistance levels for prototyping purposes

Prototyping

An NFL helmet replica was used to prototype FIBIS. Tech and hardware were incorporated to test and prove the validity of the concept.