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Solutionix Corp.

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Solutionix 3D Scanning Solution Enables Design of Custom-Fit Helmet

Published: Friday, November 8, 2013 - 17:37

(Solutionix: Bristol, UK) -- Solutionix, the leading developer and manufacturer of structured-light 3D scanning solutions, announced that HJC, the world’s largest manufacturer of motorcycle crash helmets, relied on a Solutionix Rexcan 3D scanner to provide the 3D digital data required to design and manufacture a custom-fit helmet. The helmet was designed for reigning motoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo to wear during the 2013 motoGP season.

To ensure that HJC’s latest lightweight helmet, the RPHA 10, would fit Lorenzo’s head perfectly for both comfort and to reduce fatigue during races, the world champion’s head was scanned to create a precise 3D digital model. This enabled the reverse engineering of custom padding for the interior of the helmet and also provided fitting data for the outer shell size and a model for HJC’s ergonomic library.

The Solutionix scanner, which uses structured light as opposed to a laser as found in many other 3D scanners, was selected by HJC for this project, as well as for a variety of other reverse engineering and quality inspection applications. It was chosen for its speed and its ability to capture freeform surfaces, such as the human head, to an accuracy of less than 10 microns. The captured data are output as either a point cloud or a polygon mesh model in the .stl format.

Once the scan data model was completed, it was imported into HJC’s CAD system, where it could be compared with the RPHA helmet construction 3D CAD model.

“A motorcycle helmet relies on a good fit in order for it not to move on the head either at high speed—over 340 kph (210 mph) in the case of motoGP—or particularly in the event of a crash, when the shell and internal padding are designed to deform and absorb impact in a precisely controlled manner,” explains Robert Keogh, regional manager, EMEA, at Solutionix.

With the 3D scan data model in the CAD system, the existing helmet model could then be subtly modified to match the model of Lorenzo’s head, allowing for deformation of soft materials, such as the foam of the inner pads. This enabled decisions to be made on pad sizes and the production of new custom-designed pads, using rapid prototyping technology or manufacturing new foam moulds.

The end result was an aerodynamically efficient helmet that fits the current motoGP world champion “like a glove”—and which may well help him retain his title at the end of the 2013 motoGP season.


About The Author

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Solutionix Corp.

Since 2000, Solutionix has been a worldwide leading developer and distributor of 3D Digitizing technology, focusing on bringing solutions that cater to industry requirements, covering a versatile yet specialized range of applications in areas such as quality inspection and reverse engineering.