MIPS Helmet Technology
What is MIPS?
MIPS (Multi-Directional Impact Protection System) was founded in 1996 by a neurosurgeon and a researcher from the Royal Institute of Technology, both located in Stockholm, Sweden.
MIPS is designed to add protection against rotational motion (or kinematics) transmitted to the brain from angled impacts to the head. Rotational motion is a combination of rotational energy (angular velocity) and rotational forces from angular acceleration that both affect the brain and increase the risk for minor and severe brain injuries. MIPS’ added protection system has been proven to reduce rotational motion when implemented in a helmet by redirecting energies and forces otherwise transmitted to the brain.
When you look inside a helmet you can usually see the MIPS BPS low friction layer under the comfort padding. It’s usually yellow and marked with the MIPS logo. The low friction layer is always designed for the specific helmet so it may vary from helmet to helmet but it’s always equally safe and they all perform the same way.
How does MIPS work?
MIPS is a Brain Protection System that aims to combat rotational motion that can cause brain injuries.
A low friction layer allows a sliding movement of 10–15mm, in all directions, reducing rotational motion to the brain during impact.
Reality Based Testing: Statistics show that many brain injuries occur due to angled impacts to the head. However, in standard helmet tests the helmet is dropped vertically onto a flat surface, and this does not create an angled impact. These results are helpful for measuring precise vertical impacts, but inferior for measuring a more realistic scenario of an angled impact. The MIPS test rig is developed for testing angled impacts to simulate a fall during a crash.
Scientifically Proven: Depending on what type of helmet is tested, the helmet is dropped from 2,2–3,1 meters onto a 45-degree impact angle covered with grinding paper. Three different types of impact points are tested, and all helmets are tested in all sizes.
Data is gathered using nine accelerometers inside a Hybrid III crash test dummy head and analyzed using a computer model known as the Finite Element Model. The same helmet model is compared with and without the MIPS BPS to make sure that the helmet passes the strain reduction criteria MIPS have on all approved helmets.
More than 20.000 tests have been conducted at the global test center in Stockholm, Sweden. In addition to that, a number of third-party tests have also been made supporting MIPS safety claims, for example:
- Folksam, Sweden, 2015-2019. Snow, bike and equestrian helmets
- Länsförsäkringar, Sweden, 2018
- Consumer Reports, US 2016
- Testfakta, 2016
MIPS helmets also took top ratings at a Virginia Tech helmet ratings, US. Top 13 helmets in the ranking where MIPS BPS equipped and received top ratings for safety.