Hövding

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Hövding
Founded 2005
Founders Anna Haupt and Terese Alstin
Headquarters Malmö, Sweden
Key people
Anna Haupt, founder and Terese Alstin, founder
Number of employees
20+
Website www.hövding.com

Hövding is the world's first airbag bicycle helmet, invented by Anna Haupt and Terese Alstin in Malmö, Sweden in 2005. After seven years of research, development and testing, the Hövding was launched in November 2011. The two founders Anna Haupt and Terese Alstin left the company in beginning of 2015 when the new external CEO didn't agree on the company visions. [1][2]

Photo of the Hovding Airbag for Cyclists.

Hövding was initially created as a master thesis for the founders' Master of Industrial Design at the Faculty of Engineering at Lund University in Sweden.[3] Their studies included the comparison of accelerometer data from bicycle crashes against 'typical' cycling.[4] The Hövding contains accelerometers that detect these unusual movements which then deploys the airbag if the movement patterns match the profile of a crash.[5] Each Hövding airbag also contains a "Black Box" that records the accelerometer data 10 seconds before a deployment.[6] This data can be used by the Hövding developers to improve the product. The Hövding collar is constructed of a waterproof material, and has interchangeable fabric "shells" that allow colour customisation.[5]

Hövding is CE certified[1] after undergoing an extensive process for approval by SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden. CE marking is required for a cycle helmet to be able to be sold in Europe and certifies that the helmet complies with the requirements laid down in the EU Directive for personal protection equipment.

In March 2015 Hövding 2.0 was released. There are a number of changes that were added based on feedback from users. These include improvements to the weight, comfort and change in location of the USB port.

Safety tests[edit]

Folksam[edit]

In 2012 the Swedish insurance company Folksam tested 13 cycle helmets on the market. They carried out an impact test on the same principles as for CE marking but with a higher impact speed, 25 km/h instead of 20 km/h.[7]

All the traditional helmets achieved G-force ranging from 196 to 294 g. The lower the value, the better the helmet’s ability to protect the cyclist’s head in an accident. Hövding achieved 65 g, providing at least three times better shock absorption than the other helmets.

Que Choisir[edit]

A test by French Que Choisir concluded that Hövding did not meet international safety requirements, according to the magazine of the Swedish Consumers' Association.[8]

Reception[edit]

Anna Haupt and Terese Alstin won the world's most prestigious designer award with their invention Hövding Index:Award 2011,[9] and D&AD Award in 2012.[10]

Criticism is mainly focused on the price of the Hövding,[11] and questions about its functionality during certain types of crashes.[citation needed]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Venessa Wong (April 26, 2012). "An "Invisible" Bike Helmet From Sweden". Business Week. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  2. ^ Sarah Nylund (April 23, 2012). "Hövding återkallar cykelhjälmar". Sydsvenskan. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  3. ^ "Who We Are". Hövding Sverige AB. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  4. ^ "Invisible helmet, airbag for cyclists designed in Malmö". Bikestorming.org. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  5. ^ a b "How Hövding Works". Hövding Sverige AB. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  6. ^ "After an Accident". Hövding Sverige AB. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  7. ^ "Testing of bicycle helmets for adults". http://www.folksam.se/. March 2012. Retrieved March 2012.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help); External link in |publisher= (help)
  8. ^ http://www.radron.se/artiklar/Uppblasbara-cykelhjalmen-klarar-inte-sakerhetsstandarden/
  9. ^ Alice Rawsthorn (September 4, 2011). "This Contest Takes the Prize". New York Times. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  10. ^ "WWinners - Hšvding". D&AD. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  11. ^ Laker, Laura (22 May 2012). "Will the airbag bike helmet be the way forward?". London: Guardian.co.uk. Retrieved 28 July 2013. 

External links[edit]

Hövding website