In an effort to combat the heat and humidity in Louisiana, the LSU football program will wear air-conditioned helmets during practice and games this fall.
The helmets are equipped with proprietary cooling technology from Tigeraire, a Baton Rouge-based company that manufactures airflow products to help athletes, industrial workers and military personnel stay cool.
The $185 device, known as the Cyclone v2, is installed directly into the helmet and accelerates air over the player’s face. It features rechargeable batteries that hold a charge for more than five hours and have a lifespan of four years.
In response to players wearing face shields on their helmets during the COVID-19 pandemic, the LSU Office of Innovation and Technology Commercialization actually filed a patent for helmet cooling and circulation technologies in 2020.
The shields had a tendency to fog up, reduce air flow and increase overall body temperature, so the device was developed to make the helmets cooler without compromising the structural integrity or function. It was then licensed to Tigerair for commercial production.
The device went through several iterations, including one with the option to add N95 filter material to the intake, before it was ready for widespread use, with some high schools in Virginia also among those testing the technology this spring.
It’s unclear if the technology will give LSU an advantage over its opponents this season, but it certainly won’t hurt to have during the season opener against Florida State in Orlando, home games against Grambling State and Arkansas and road trips to Mississippi State and Ole Miss in September.