Aprilia have debuted their latest innovation in the MotoGP team’s garage, showing off their new augmented reality helmets that they’re hoping to have the crew wearing by as early as next season.
Using a combination of heads up displays, an array of cameras and some clever computing, the new system is designed to aid time, performance and safety in pit lane by allowing mechanics to access information and communication on screen in front of them.
Through a 3D hologram of the entire racing bike, the mechanics will then be able to see in real time the telemetric data of the temperature of water, oil and tires at the point where they will be most useful. They will also be able to make a checklist of the wear on some parts of the bike and evaluate when to do the replacement.
They can also interact with models of pinout connectors and see the wiring capabilities by looking at each connector individually. This feature involves speeding up the cable connection activity and virtually zeroing the risk of error by the mechanics.
A remote expert mode also allows the chief engineer to communicate remotely with the mechanics by displaying an overlay on the helmet screen with strategic information such as the type of tires to be mounted, the kilograms of petrol to be in the tank or the lap number of the exit.
However, perhaps the most innovative feature is a thermal imaging camera linked to the heads up display, allowing the crew to see hotspots on the bike in real time to help with identifying issues like leaks or blockages.