Hothead Technologies, an Atlanta-based company, has released through its Hothead Sports division a wireless heat monitoring system embedded in a football helmet. The helmet is designed to prevent athletes from falling victim to potentially life-threatening heatstroke.
The helmets use an RFID-enabled solution designed by Identec Solutions. A lightweight, impact-resistant transponder with temperature-measuring capabilities is placed inside the helmet. The transponder tracks the body temperature of the wearer and transmits the information in real time to a handheld computer. The system has a read range of up to 500 meters.
In its real-world application, the Hothead system can track an athlete’s body temperature during practices or a game. The information is then sent to a handheld computer or PDA carried by a trainer on the sidelines. If the temperature reading exceeds a preset threshold level, a warning is sounded. The system is designed to prevent incidents of heatstroke like the one which killed Minnesota Vikings star Korey Stringer in 2001.
While the football helmet design is the first system to hit the market, Hothead Technologies is also planning to target other sports, as well as other markets where heatstroke is a threat, including the military or firefighters.