Air Ride

Winter semester 2018/2019 – Technical Design – Prof. Tom Philipps – Prof. Philipp Thesen – Victoria Lemke, Eliza Schneider,
Rebecca Röll, Maximilian Klyk, Jonas Engelhardt

Air Ride is an interactive augmented reality ski helmet based on an air cushion system.

Helmet concept

The purpose of Air Ride is to combine a safety helmet with an augmented reality interface. The ski helmet is based on an air cushion system. The helmet consists of two air cushion layers. The large outer cushions are filled with high pressure and absorb the energy during heavy falls. The inner cushion consists of small air chambers that are inflated with low pressure to ensure a comfortable wearing experience. It is inflated directly on the head to adapt to the shape of the user‘s head. A metal frame connects the cushions and is foldable by an interruption at the sides. The Augmented Reality System, which is integrated in the visor, gives the user a new digital experience during winter sports.​​​​​​​

light weight
safer protection

Air Ride

How it works

Air pump on the helmet backside

To ensure protection in the event of a fall, the two air cushions are inflated one above the other. First, both air cushions are filled via the pump at the back of the helmet until the inner cushion has adapted comfortably to the head and gives a feeling of safety. Then the outer cushion is filled with high pressure via the pressure cartridge to absorb the energy during heavy falls. The outer filling is controlled via the side buttons. The two air cushions are connected via a one-way valve, so that air can only pass from the inner to the outer cushion. When filling with the pressure cartridge, the manually pumped pressure inside remains unchanged and only the outer cushion is filled with high pressure. The outer air cushion is divided into a few large chambers to provide additional protection and give the overall cushion greater rigidity.

Technical structure

Technical views


The air cushions are made of polyurethane, are elastic and impermeable to air. Since the outer air cushion is filled with high pressure, increased strength must be guaranteed. Therefore it is covered with an aramid fibre fabric. This fabric is stab and tear resistant and defines the shape of the helmet through its stiffness. From the outside, the aramid fibre fabric is provided with a further PU layer to provide the necessary UV and moisture protection. This creates a matt surface that can be dyed in different colours. On the other hand, the elasticity of the PU is allowed for the inner padding so that the individual chambers can arch over each other. A merino wool cloth is attached to these with Velcro to ensure a comfortable feeling. The surrounding frame is made of stainless steel and offers the helmet the necessary stability. The housing of the electronics and the visor frame are made of polyethylene. A foam layer on the inside of the visor frame provides the necessary windproofness and offers additional wearing comfort.


The ventilation of the helmet is ensured by an airduct system. The windstream enters through the louvers at the front and is distributed through the duct system. Through the louvers behind the warm exhaust air comes out. The inner chambers are created in a hexagonal pattern and bulge when inflated. This results in intermediate spaces which are connected to the ventilation ducts and in which the interior climate of the helmet can circulate freely. The air cushions additionally offer a heatinsulating function.

Design model


The concept of the Augmented Reality System for skiing was developed in cooperation with the Department of Computer Science at Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences. Via an app, the user can learn the functions of the Air Ride System, download various data and personalize the Head Up. The AirRide system gives the user a new digital experience in winter sports.

Connect your helmet via the app

Augmented reality visor

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