For more than 18 years, the ECE 22 05 homologation has been the undisputed protagonist. From early January 2021, the new amendment 06 to the regulation ECE/ONU 22 came into force, it was born to fill the need to keep up with the continuous and incessant innovations that have overwhelmed the world of protective helmets for drivers and passengers of motorcycles and mopeds. The new homologation ECE 22 06 provides new tests and additional requirements useful to check the behavior of the helmet and its components in a wide variety of scenarios and situations, to certify, more completely than in the past, the safety and quality of products.
A major change introduced concerns the impact points tests. The previous regulation was focused essentially on 5 points (frontal part, top, side, rear part, chin guard). The new standards have integrated this analysis by considering 12 additional impact points compared to those already predicted in the past, this making these checks more complete and accurate.
Another great innovation is giver by tests on rotational acceleration. To verify this feature, tests are made with false heads equipped with accelerometers and angular velocity measurement sensors. During these checks the helmet will be dropped 5 times in 5 different positions on an anvil at 45° at a speed of 8 m/s.
Also the linear impact test has been renewed and made more complete, indeed two further variants have been added to test at speed of 7,5 m/s, the first one is focused on high energy linear impact, the other one on low energy linear impact; to be able to better examine the behavior of protective helmet in different and multiple situations.
New standards provide also tighter checks for retention systems, with the aim to thoroughly check the helmet detaching.
In addition, it was introduced a supplemental assessment to test the visor resistance, the latter indeed must be able to withstand high-speed particle impacts. This test simulates the high-speed impact of a pebble, it is carried out by means of a steel ball, with a diameter equal to 6 mm, shot on the visor at 60 m/s. In addition to this the legislation provide, for this helmet’s component, a new limit of the ability to obscure sunlight, lowering the threshold from 50% to 35%, or 25% in case of photochromatic or liquid crystal visors. To complete all these tests were also included some test to check the performance requirements of sun visors.
For helmets with P/J homologation, finally, more specific checks have been introduced for modular helmets. These are essentially made in order to verify that the chin guard does not rotate too far back or that it does not release itself in certain situations compromising the view.
As already mentioned, the new homologation ECE 22 06 came into effect in early January 2021, the producers will have 30 months to adapt production to new standards and 36 months to end the sale of ECE 22 05 homologated products, actually there aren’t similar deadlines for end-users.