Hans von Holst is a Swedish neurosurgeon and professor emeritus who has dedicated his professional life to studying head injuries. His research recognized that protection against brain injuries was inadequate. In 1996 he began to study the relationship between brain injuries and helmet construction.
Together with Peter Halldin, a researcher at the Swedish Royal Institute of Technology, they developed ground-breaking technology in the way helmets were designed and manufactured that would prove to significantly improve brain protection.
Their goal was to achieve much better protection against rotational motion trauma. That is, when the head is impacted at an angle rather than “head on” (straight radial impact). The angular impact is the most common cause of injury and had been the least researched. They conducted novel research that mimicked real life accidents. This new thinking shook the foundation of traditional helmet technology, which had been built on straight radial impact.
As an outcome of their work, they discovered that a relative motion between two low friction layers, or surfaces, in a helmet could reduce rotational motion injuries. Several years of research, testing, and development introduced the innovation now known as MIPS – Multi-directional Impact Protection System. This unique helmet technology provided a higher level of added protection for the brain. And, as a result of their work, helmet legal requirements and regulations were overhauled.
The MIPS technology adds protection in all types of helmets; for cyclists, skiers, motorcyclists, car racing and all other helmet-bearing sports and activities. This includes construction and professional industry use as well, e.g., hard hats.
MIPS is an ingredient brand and has relied primarily on helmet brands to create retailer and consumer awareness and demand. Today, 80 % of the world’s leading helmet brands have partnered with MIPS for added protection.
So, to summarize.
MIPS; what it is, why you should use it and how it works – in short:
* MIPS is a brain protection system
* Rotational motion can cause brain injuries
* The low friction layer allows a sliding movement of 10–15 mm, in all directions, reducing the rotational motion to the brain during impact.
* MIPS adds protection
Mips AB formally founded in 2001 by five specialists in the biomechanical field of the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm, Sweden.
From the initial scientific stepping stones, Karolinska Institute, Karolinska Universitetssjukhuset, and Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan (Royal Institute of Technology) began a cooperative research relationship nearly two decades ago resulting in the Multi-directional Impact Protection System (MIPS), a technology now applied in helmet manufacturing all around the world.
In 1995 Swedish neurosurgeon Hans Von Holst began evaluating the general construction of helmets. Following several years of study and work related to head trauma for the World Health Organization in Geneva, he determined existing helmet technology provided inadequate protection against brain trauma – with devastating consequences for victims of brain injuries. Together with Royal Institute of Technology researcher, Peter Halldin, Von Holst collaborated on developing a technology that would provide a significantly more effective protection against head trauma. After thoroughly evaluating the brain anatomy, physiology, and combining their years of testing and expertise, Von Holst and Halldin produced and created what is now recognized as the Multi directional Impact Protection System. A technology that mimicks the brain’s own protective structure.
The company MIPS AB was formally founded in 2001 by five specialists in the biomechanical field of the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm, Sweden. Developed by neurosurgeons and scientists, this technology was created to reduce rotational forces on the brain caused by angled impacts to the head. In a helmet with MIPS brain protection system, the shell and the liner are separated by a low friction layer. When a helmet with MIPS technology is subjected to an angled impact, the low friction layer allows the helmet to slide relative to the head.
Over the last 30 years MIPS AB has conducted several tests, research and studies involving injury prediction and the simulation of head and neck injuries using advanced numerical methods. Early on one of the MIPS founders, Peter Halldin, together with Magnus Aare published a paper “A New Laboratory Rig for Evaluating Helmets subject to Oblique Impacts.” This paper was based on a study presenting a new impact rig for subjecting test helmets to oblique impacts, and therefore able to test impacts of increased statistical relevance to more realistic accidents.
Halldin presented the results of helmets subjected to oblique impact testing and the results showed that it was possible to significantly reduce rotational acceleration with a new type of helmet design, without changing the desirable energy-absorbing properties observed in purely radial impacts.
Following its inception in 2001, MIPS AB evolved from concept to product introducing the technology in an equestrian helmet 2007. As MIPS made significant expansions internationally, its unique branding was shaped in 2009 giving the Stockholm-based company a clear and distinct identity in logo, and all online platforms.
Beginning 2010 MIPS AB took on the bike and snow helmet industry gaining wide-spread recognition and the technology was increasingly adopted by motocross, mountain biking, skiing, snowboarding, and other sports industries where head trauma is at risk. As the conversations and awareness level of head trauma injuries has recently elevated, so to have the awareness and benefits of technology including MIPS.
In 2013 Peter Halldin (MIPS AB, Stockholm Sweden), together with Daniel Lanner (MIPS AB, Stockholm Sweden), Richard Coomber (Revision Military, Inc, Montreal Canada), and Sven Kleiven (Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm Sweden) published a paper describing both a numerical and an experimental approach to measuring the blunt impact protection offered by military helmets.
In early 2014, one of the world’s largest helmet manufacturers, BRG Sports, Inc and MIPS AB entered into a formal partnership after several years of sharing their technology offering MIPS technology to a much wider global audience. Since then, MIPS AB has added several new brands to their fleet, along with expansions into the USA, European and China markets including test labs, offices, workforce, and a solid presence in these markets. Besides BRG Sports, MIPS brand partners now include Airoh, Fox, Lazer Sports, Marucci, One Industries, O’Neal, POC, Rossignol, Scott, Smith Optics, Spectra, SixSixOne, Sweet Protection, Stadium, TSG, TEC, and Triple Eight.
In 2015 MIPS has continued its growth adding yet more brands to the list of partners. Among these are ANSR, Bontrager, Bern, Specialized, MSC, Zeroh+. At the end of the year the company acchieved a milestone, producing its 1 000 000th layer.
In 2016 the growth will continue. MIPS will move a larger office with an excellent, state of the art testing facility. The future looks bright and we look forward to keep developing new and excting products.