An airbag lifejacket for motorcyclists: How does Airvest work?


Published on 1 October 2015 by Gill

How does a simple looking vest act as a lifejacket airbag for motorcyclists? 

Helite develops and produces a number of wearable airbags, of which Airvest is one. The concept is simple: you wear an airbag around your body – back, chest and neck – and it inflates if you crash, protecting those vulnerable areas against impact from the road or other vehicles. The airbag has two main purposes: to maintain the body stiff in position as in a cocoon and to absorb energy during the impact.

Its design is based on fatalities statistics analysis to determine main accidents and hardest injuries then traumatology analysis to optimize the protection.

But how does that actually work?

There are four critical phases for an efficient protection:


The incident can be detected thanks to various technologies, mechanical or electronic according the expectations


Different solutions are available: Mechanical: the gas container is opened using a mechanical system that is manually reloadable. Pyrotechnic: the gas container is open using a pyrotechnic igniter.


The airbag chamber is made of a gas proof material paired with specific fabrics to adjust the pressure level. The shape of the chamber depends on body areas to protect. And of course for the fashion-conscious among you, there are a variety of fits and looks, from the straight-up vest, to jackets long and short.

The vests and jackets start from around £385 for adults, with a child's vest costing £325. Visit for more details.

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