The jacket, currently being tested at Enel power plants,
will allow for the protection of workers in case of a fall or impact when working at a height
Rome, October 11th, 2017 – The Safety Jacket is an innovative system to protect workers at risk of accidents resulting from an impact or fall while working at a height. The system stems from the collaboration between Enel and D-AIR LAB, the innovative start-up linked to Dainese. It is an individual protective jacket based on D-air® technology, the protective airbag already designed and commercialised by Dainese for motorcycling and skiing.
The Safety Jacket was designed and will be developed in collaboration with occupational health professors and doctors at Bologna’s Università Alma Mater and Policlinico of Sant’Orsola. The first prototype, created in response to data and basic requirements set out by Enel, is currently in the testing phase at company power plants, where its ergonomics and functionality can be verified in real-life situations. Once finalised, the jacket will find application not only in the utilities sectors, but also in many other industrial fields.
“The safety of those working in our plants is our top priority, something we commit to each day. In order to further improve on the excellent results already achieved, we need to harness all the tools that technology makes available to us, continually question what we are doing, and think in an innovative way. The technology we are testing with Dainese and D-air Lab is a very important step in that direction,” said Enrico Viale, Enel’s Head of Global Thermal Generation.
“To be able to contribute to improving worker safety is a very stimulating goal, and to do so together with a prestigious multinational like Enel is an honor. The use of D-air® technology in this project is an extraordinary opportunity to extend the possible applications of this ‘intelligent garment’,” said Vittorio Cafaggi, CEO of D-AIR LAB.
“Improving safety in dynamic sports has always been Dainese’s mission,” said Dainese Group CEO Cristiano Silei. “Inspired by the potential of the human race, we study people’s protective needs in the most extreme conditions: riding a motorbike on a track at 350 km/h, downhill skiing at 150 km/h, sailing a regatta at 50 knots, reaching zero gravity in outer space. Dainese is committed to ongoing research into innovative systems that serve to continually redefine protective standards from head to toe. The Dainese D-air® platform constitutes the maximum expression of this philosophy, while the application of airbag technology in environments outside of sports represents another milestone and the natural evolution in the process of disseminating those technologies applied to safety.”
The Safety Jacket is composed of two elements: the electronic part, which recognises fall conditions and sends an activation signal, and the pneumatic part, which protects the worker against impact by inflating special airbags around the body. The two components derive from the D-air® architecture that was specifically designed for sports competitions and has been protecting motorcycle and ski champions for some time, including Valentino Rossi and Matthias Mayer.
More in detail, the electronic system is equipped with three accelerometers and three gyroscopes, which send a continuous stream of data to be analysed by the device’s electronics through a sophisticated algorithm. The system is able to identify fall conditions and activate inflation in a matter of milliseconds, significantly reducing the probability of physical injury following impact.
The design of the Safety Jacket, with particular reference to the pneumatic part, is the result of scrupulous planning and testing using simulation programs on the finished elements dedicated to the airbags (Madymo) normally used in the automotive field. As a result, the design has been optimised to ensure maximum protection of the body parts exposed to trauma in the case of a fall from a height of up to 2 metres, a situation that does not require use of a harness, or for impact by pendulum-effect for those working at heights above 2 metres, when a harness is used.
The Enel Group is present in over 30 countries across five continents, producing energy through a managed capacity of approximately 85 GW. Enel distributes electricity and gas through a network measuring more than 2 million kilometres, and, with more than 65 million business and household customers worldwide, it has the largest customer base among European competitors. Enel is the largest utility in Europe in terms of market capitalisation and figures among Europe’s leading power companies for installed capacity and reported EBITDA. Enel’s green energy division, Enel Green Power (EGP), manages around 39 GW in wind, solar, geothermal, biomass and hydropower plants located throughout Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa and, more recently, Australia.
DAINESE GROUP – MISSION SAFETY
Founded in 1972 by Lino Dainese, true to its mission of advocating and delivering safety in dynamic sports, the Company designs advanced protective head-to-toe gear for motorcycling, winter sports, cycling, horse riding and sailing. In 2007 Dainese acquired the iconic premium sport helmet manufacturer AGV, established in 1947. In 2015, the Group expanded with the acquisition of Swedish POC, global leader in protective gear for winter sports and cycling. Dainese, AGV and POC products represent the technology frontier in the field of protection for dynamic sports and are used by the world's top athletes including Valentino Rossi and Emirates Team New Zealand.
D-air Lab is an innovative start-up founded by Lino Dainese; its mission is to apply D-air® airbag technology to protect people during their daily activities. D-air Lab is linked to Dainese S.p.A and the two collaborate to transfer the patrimony of technological know-how originating from the world of competition and sports to everyday life.