Using Non-Newtonian Fluids as Padding in Hockey Helmets to Reduce the Risk of Concussion
Callum Fletcher
David Thompson Secondary
Floor Location : M 139 N

Ice hockey, among other sports, is one of the leading causes of concussions in the world. Caused by the brain hitting the side of the skull, concussions can lead to memory, cognition, and concentration issues that affect people for the rest of their life. The protective padding used in helmets to prevent concussions is limited, and does very little to negate the risk of concussion or other serious brain injuries. This project looks at using non-newtonian fluids as padding for hockey helmets to help reduce the risk of concussion for people playing hockey. Non-newtonian fluids have the ability to harden when more force is placed on them, which could make them very good at reducing the force of an impact on a player’s head. To test the hypothesis that non-newtonian fluids are superior helmet padding to the traditional foams being used in helmets, multiple non-newtonian fluids were tested along with regular foam padding to find out which one is superior at absorbing shock and reducing the risk of concussion. The hypothesis that non-newtonian fluids are better at reducing impact force was proven by the experiment. Both of the non-newtonian fluids that were tested were better at reducing the impact force than the regular foam padding that was tested. Using non-newtonian fluids as helmet padding was found by this project to be a better option than regular padding and its use in helmets could benefit the health of millions that play ice hockey.