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A guy on a scruffy bike
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VERY SIMPLE ANSWER

Cushioning designed for a single impact will absorb more energy than cushioning designed for multiple impacts

Due to the velocity of a bike impact, you need more cushioning. To do this with reusable cushioning, such as polyethylene or polyurethane, you would need a much thicker cushioning - several inches thick

I'm a packaging engineer, I design reusable cushioning for a living - I'm typically using 2 to 4 inches of reusable foam for a typical 24" to 48" drop.
/thread. There's your answer.

Helmets have something known as EPS which

This thing works only once, so even if you manage to drop your lid on concrete/asphalt from 3 feet or above, your helmet is a goner the EPS has done its work and is of no use in case of an impact.
Source--
Helmet Performance: Blowing the Lid Off - Motorcyclist magazine
That's if you drop it with something in it. If it's empty, then the EPS is not affected, and the only question is whether the impact might have damaged the integrity of the hard outside shell.

PhilB
 

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I'm a packaging engineer, I design reusable cushioning for a living - I'm typically using 2 to 4 inches of reusable foam for a typical 24" to 48" drop.
werd up. never knew there was such skill involved...

 

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I found a flaw in my own reasoning. As long as the helmet slides along the ground, the energy of impact is only a fall from 5' in the air or so, and you can almost ignore the forward velocity. So it is probable that bike helmets are designed for MUCH less than 16x the energy absorption of a football helmet.

Still, I am convinced it is an energy absorption thing. But also convinced I'm off on the magnitude of it. Got excited by the physics, I guess.
Also, the velocity of the football helmet should be
I found a flaw in my own reasoning. As long as the helmet slides along the ground, the energy of impact is only a fall from 5' in the air or so, and you can almost ignore the forward velocity. So it is probable that bike helmets are designed for MUCH less than 16x the energy absorption of a football helmet.

Still, I am convinced it is an energy absorption thing. But also convinced I'm off on the magnitude of it. Got excited by the physics, I guess.
Also, the helmet of the footballer should be multiplied by 2, for head on collisions at full sprints. 20mph(per player) sprint x 2 = 40mph carrying the average weight of a player(220lbs?).

Whatever that force is, should be what football helmets are engineered for.
 
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