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Researchers use Intel chips to build better football helmets

November 16, 2010

 Football players infamously take a serious amount of punishment. Now, Intel is offering up a way to measure the extent of that pootential physical damage.

footballIntel is currently working with universities and a sports equipment maker to build an intelligent football helmet.

Researchers and helmet-maker Riddell are using clusters of computers powered by Intel chips to rapidly compute the risks and ways that a football player could be injured as he slams into a 220 lb linebacker and other typical head impacts.

And some of that data comes from real-life collisions as players suit up with helmets decked out with instruments to measure the forces involved.

Intel’s Atom processors, which are ubiquitous in PC netbooks, could eventually be embedded in helmets, letting doctors monitor the effect of massive and potentially health-endangering blows suffered by professional football players as they play.

Researchers from Texas State University, Dartmouth, University of Northern Colorado and other schools demonstrated their research at a supercomputing event in New Orleans on Monday.

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