Detroit-based football helmet manufacturer Xenith today announced a long-term collaboration with Rheon Labs Ltd., a company specializing in energy control and impact mitigation headquartered in the United Kingdom.
Rheon is an ultra-energy-absorbing technology that intelligently changes its behavior in response to an impact. It is comprised of materials and geometries that provide soft cushioning for high-occurrence, lower-speed impacts, but adapts for optimized protection in high-speed impacts.
Rheon inventor Dennis Plant has developed smart textiles for NASA and has created some of the most advanced test rigs in the world in order to simulate real-world impacts.
Xenith’s first product with the Rheon technology is slated to be introduced in early 2020.
“We’re constantly exploring and evaluating technologies at the forefront of innovation to bring to the field,” says Grant C. Goulet, vice president of product innovation at Xenith. “Rheon’s cutting-edge technology will enable a new generation of products with unparalleled energy control. Through thoughtful collaboration with Rheon across research, design, and engineering, we’re poised to deliver products that will truly elevate the athlete’s on-field performance.”
According to its manufacturer, Rheon provides energy control across a wide spectrum of impact intensities, and in a wide range of temperatures. It is waterproof, washable, and can be molded into unique geometries that add performance and promote cooling. The Rheon material is lightweight, durable, and self-healing. These features lend themselves to a variety of different Xenith products.
“Protection in American football has been in the spotlight for the last few years,” explains Plant. “Collaborating with Xenith’s team gave us the opportunity to bring our technology to an area that is ready for groundbreaking innovation. It has been an exciting start to our partnership with Xenith, combining our technology with their expertise in performance and protective gear for the football athlete. This marks the start of our collaboration to truly transform products in football over the coming years.”