This jacket was designed as an experiment to see whether improvements could be made in the protective ability and price point of modern protective jackets.
The material used to make the crumple zone was polylactic acid (PLA). This material is readily available and it is possible to print as many prototypes as required without needing to spend hours in manufacturing. PLA was also used because of its ease of recyclability. Even though PLA is not as strong as aluminum or steel, the ability to print multiple versions quickly and efficiently (without defects) makes it a better choice.
The crumple zone is placed inside the skin of the jacket and is made of PLA. It has an infill density of 10% which creates a tough rigid shape that will hold together until the jacket is retired or is put to use in an accident.
Overall, this project has allowed me to explore new ideas and attempt to create something that could benefit other people by creating a safer environment in which to ride motorbikes. It has further developed my knowledge of motorcycle injuries and how to reduce risk through preventative measures and the use of the right protective equipment.
I have also gained more knowledge of 3D printers and the materials used within these new and emerging technologies which may benefit me in the future.
Once I receive the jacket back from marking, I intend on using it to its full potential, although I hope to never have to test its safety features in real life.