The Science & Technology
How do you test my helmet?
As you might imagine, we get asked this a lot. So we thought it would be helpful to cover off a little bit about the science and technology behind what we do.
Lasers and Holograms
- Using a method called Shearography, we create a baseline hologram of the helmet at each inspection point
- Depending on helmet design, there may be up to 5 or more inspection points per helmet
- This baseline hologram is saved for comparison purposes.
- A small amount of heat is then applied to the helmet at the inspection point
- The heat we apply is no more than +3degC, which is likely to be less of a temperature shift your helmet will experience on a daily basis
- As the heat starts to leave the helmet, any damage or defects present in the shell will become visible when compared with the baseline hologram
- The results are recorded by the NDT engineer conducting the test
Do You Inspect The Inner Polystyrene (EPS) Liner?
In many cases, damage and/or degradation of the EPS liner may be identified from a visual inspection. We recommend you periodically have a visual inspection of the liner carried out by an authorised reseller for the brand of helmet you own.
Setting aside that damage to the inner EPS liner is possible, damage to a helmet is more likely to be sustained from the outside, e.g. from an impact or through natural degradation. Therefore, if the outer shell has been compromised the integrity of the EPS liner becomes immaterial. The helmet has failed.
Do You Inspect The Buckle and Straps?
Our test identifies damage to the shell, which cannot be achieve from a visual inspection. This process will identify any fatigue / damage around the fixings for the strap, should such damage exist.
However, as with a visual inspection of the EPS liner, we recommend you periodically have a visual inspection of the buckle and strap carried out by an authorised reseller for the brand of helmet you own.
The image below shows an extreme example of a damaged EPS liner.
A word of warning: be careful when installing a comms system, especially if you use adhesive tape to position the wires that sit inside the helmet to the EPS liner. When you remove the adhesive tape, this will remove the black coating – and in doing so reduces the effectiveness of a visual inspection.