Alpinestars A.S.T. II: The Evolution of Advanced Safety Technology


A.S.T. II - The Evolution of Advanced Safety Technology

Alpinestars started its pioneering Advanced Safety Technology (AST) data acquisition system research three years ago in order to improve its understanding of the true dynamics and performance of its equipment on track. Since then, the company has continued developing electronic sensing and acquisition technology, aiming to gather yet more real-time data, more efficiently, across a wider range of parameters.

The result of this period of research has not only contributed to improvements in the performance of Alpinestars racing apparel and footwear, notably cooling and construction, but also to a much deeper understanding of data acquisition technology specifically designed to deliver information from a rider on-track.

Alpinestars now has the second generation of Advanced Safety Technology - AST II.

The new system has significantly improved performance over the original and its variants. With much greater processing power compared to the original system, AST II has opened the door to far greater fields of research and improved data acquisition and delivery. The new data logger has been adapted from technology used in Formula 1 to allow installation in a race suit with multiple sensor connection options to gather data from different areas of the suit. The technology is also adaptable for use in other motorsports disciplines where Alpinestars R&D; is active.

The most significant development that the new system has allowed is the connection of an Inertial Motion Unit. This constantly monitors the exact orientation of the rider's body in relation to the ground and records the overall force and magnitude of any acceleration/deceleration as well as any impacts received. The system also features an integrated GPS which, coupled with the Inertial Motion Unit and advanced post processing software, makes it much easier to amass data and fully determine movement and forces being exerted by and on the rider and their exact position, as well as the relationship between data and track location. This means the system can analyse the position of the rider's torso and limbs before, during and after an accident and the points and direction of impact forces throughout the progress of a fall and exactly where and when it happened.

The power and adaptability of AST II also allows for physiological testing as well as movement and impact sensing. This will include heart rate measurement and temperature, humidity and cooling mapping around the rider's body.

The information Alpinestars derives from AST II will make a significant contribution in the continued development of the design and build of technical protection as well as projects involving automatic deployment technology that Alpinestars is also progressing; where the sequence analysis of movement data is vital.

AST II first ran at the German Grand Prix at Sachsenring, 13th-15th July, where Kenny Roberts Jr. used the system installed in the hump of his suit and was set-up to measure lean angles and movement he was achieving around the track. Although very much a systems check, data was recorded and the test was successful.

Alpinestars ran the system again at Laguna Seca with Carlos Checa and Toni Elias, conducting further system and data tests.

For further information, please contact:
Emily Orr - Media Services
Alpinestars Inc.
2780 W. 237th Street
Torrance, CA 90505
ph. (+1) 310 891 0222
fax. (+1) 310 891 0299

Example of data aquired by Alpinestars during the development process.
The AST II unit which is placed in the hump of a riding suit for data aquisition.
Kenny Roberts Jr. testing the data unit at Sachsenring