Cardiff Scientific Society: Tackling Brain Injury in Sport

13/12/2017, 19:00 - 20:00

Members only but membership can be bought at the event (£15 adults, free under-18s)

Speaker: Dr Peter Theobald (Cardiff University)

Clinical understanding of the brain continues to advance, providing an increasingly robust scientific platform for correlating the cause and effect of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Recent understanding includes appreciating the relatively high injury risk associated with the rotational ‘component’ (as opposed to the vertical component) of a head impact, with this platform now enabling identification of environments that may represent greater TBI risk.

A series of contact sports have recently introduced enhanced protocols for the in-game management of potential TBIs, with head protection strategies in American football being particularly advanced, in-part driven by the accepted correlation that elite-level participation causes an elevated TBI risk.

Existing head protection technologies typically utilise closed cell foams, such as vinyl nitrile and expanded polystyrene, which have been the predominant materials in multi- and single-impact helmets for decades. This presentation focusses on the research and development of novel, high-performance material structures that appear capable of enhanced energy absorption. It will consider our use of computational simulation and our adoption of additive manufacturing, the combination of which has enabled design and fabrication of high-performance materials formed of complex, origami-derived structural geometries.

Initial results from this design approach have proven positive, whilst longer-term potential exists to ‘mass manufacture for one’, producing solutions tailored to an individual’s specific anatomy. This research may ultimately lead to the introduction of truly ‘personalised’, protective equipment.


Cardiff Scientific Society

Cardiff Scientific Society is a members only, non-profit making organisation that retains the aims set out when it was founded in 1926, “By Lectures, Demonstrations, etc, of a popular nature, to extend interest in the application of Science to everyday life.”

The Society runs a series of lectures on scientific topics throughout the year. These are aimed at anyone with an interest in science. Lectures are members only but membership can be bought online, by post and at the door.

Single lectures can be attended for a £5 fee or a Membership can be purchased to cover the whole year. Current fees are £15 for adult members. Young members (18 and under) and Students can join for free.


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Cardiff Scientific Society