Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Protection

BAE's modular Common Infrared Countermeasure unit (Photo: BAE Systems)

BAE Systems has submitted a proposal to the US Army’s Common Infrared Countermeasure (CIRCM) program. Once operational, BAE's system will safeguard rotary and light-fixed wing aircraft, increasing survivability against the threat posed by infrared missiles. CIRCM is designed to work alongside an infrared warning system and a flare dispenser – a commonly-used countermeasure that confuses a guided missile into seeking the heat from the flare rather than that emitted by the target aircraft.  Read More

The DNone next generation guitar travel case

For a prized, and likely very expensive, instrument, touring can be fraught with danger. Threats from knocks, bumps and scrapes lurk menacingly at every turn so investing in some form of protection is vital, but not all hard cases are made equal. After noting stagnation in guitar case technology, Timbre Cases founder Peter McMath set about designing the next generation of instrument travel protection. It's taken two years of R&D, but the company is now readying its tough dreadnought-shaped DNone case for release, which features a shock absorbent, water-resistant outer shell, humidity control and recessed wheels.  Read More

A ship's bridge, with the Marine Armor System deployed

There are a number of systems out there designed to keep pirates from boarding ships, incorporating everything from lasers to acoustic devices to writhing water hoses. However, what happens if the pirates get on board anyway? If the ship is equipped with the Marine Armor System, a series of ballistic blinds will roll down throughout the vessel, blocking access to its interior.  Read More

A conventional fire shelter after exposure to the heat of a forest fire (left) as compared...

Last June, a wildfire near Yarnell, Arizona overtook and killed 19 firefighters – even though they had set up fireproof shelters. This inspired Phoenix-based SunSeeker Enterprises to develop a shelter that's better able to withstand the high heat of forest fires. Utilizing a material licensed from NASA to protect the Space Shuttle on re-entry, the Fire Blanket is the result.  Read More

There isn't much to the Crash Guard, yet it's claimed to offer considerable impact protect...

While there are already iPhone cases that claim to protect against drops from up to 30 feet (9 m), most of those are actually more like housings that add considerable bulk to the phone. The Rhino Shield Crash Guard, however, takes a minimalist form, while reportedly still letting the phone withstand a 24-foot (7-m) drop.  Read More

Whistl is designed to protect against sexual or other violent crimes

Whistl is an iPhone case that’s designed to add a layer of extra protection to the user’s daily routine. The accessory feeds off the linked smartphone’s battery, and offers three different modes that let the user quickly get in touch with friends and the authorities, as well as emit a bright strobe light and 120 dB alarm.  Read More

The Invisiband bracelets slowly releases oil from geranium flowers to ward off mosquitoes

Lathering yourself in mosquito-repelling lotions might not be ideal, but it's better than those red swellings that would otherwise pop up on any exposed skin. The Invisaband releases a natural oil to confuse mosquitoes' senses, saving you from bites and applying layers of oily repellents.  Read More

The Tornado Shield in its rolled-up portable state, ready for action

When a tornado's heading your way, the best thing you can do is to go your basement or better yet, to a purpose-built storm shelter. The problem is, not everyone has access to either. With that in mind, Missouri-based entrepreneur Steve Anderson created the Tuuli Armor Tornado Shield. Essentially, it's a big bag that you get inside of.  Read More

Scott's ITD ProTec fabric incorporates strands of carbon fiber and a matrix of ceramic dot...

If you frequently ride a bike on asphalt, then it’s entirely possible that sooner or later you’re going to wipe out and end up with some nasty skin abrasions. While such "road rash" can occur just about anywhere on the body, the shoulders and hips are particularly prone to it, as they’re the parts of the body upon which cyclists quite often end up sliding across the road. In order to help protect those areas, Scott Sports has announced a new line of cycling clothing made to protect against road rash ... with a little help from ceramics and carbon fiber.  Read More

Volvo's XC90 will feature two 'world first' safety features

Volvo has already been bragging about how the XC90 will be the world's cleanest and most powerful SUV. Now it is touting the all-wheel drive, seven-seater's safety features, which will include an auto brake at intersections function and a run-off road protection package – both of which Volvo claims are world firsts.  Read More

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