Although most motorcyclists’ suits offer some level of shielding against fall, they are far from providing total protection. The new Dainese D-Air Racing air bag system takes motorcyclists’ protection to a new level, making this enjoyable but risky hobby slightly less dangerous.
The first real-time test of a D-Airsystem took place in Valencia, during the 2007’s Grand Prix race. Three professional racers, Marco Simoncelli, Simone Giorgi, and Michael Ranseder, fell from their motorcycles. To the crowd’s relief, the D-Airsystem was inflated immidiatly and protected the riders, who stood up, shook themselves off, climbed back onto their seats, and continued the race.
According to Dainese, tests were made using different models and two engine capacities – 125cc and 250cc. Since the development has been ongoing for the past 10 years the company’s engineers where relived to see the suit saving lives for the first time. Sources at the company claim this is the first step towards a full “head-to-toe dynamic sports protection.” However, as we can see in this Youtube video, the D-Air currently only protects vital areas – the back, neck, and shoulders, so it is yet to seen whether or not the company can provide more complete protection in the future.
TFOT has also covered the Vectrix Electric Scooter, which offers reduced carbon dioxide and smog-forming pollutants, and the BRP Spyder, an innovative three-wheeled vehicle with a motorbike’s maneuverability. Other related TFOT stories include Orbital Outfitters’ first space suit, designed for private space travelers, and the Hybrid Assistive Limb Robot Suit, designed to help paralyzed people rehabilitate.
For more information on the D-Air inflatable airbag suit, see the Dainese website.