Christopher Hollot, a professor and the head of our Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department, recently appeared on WGBY-TV 57’s Connecting Point show to talk about the Real-Time Concussion Analyzer, the senior design project of four ECE seniors last spring. Hollot was the faculty advisor for the students while they worked on their invention, which could potentially protect football players and other athletes who have suffered head-impact traumas. The Real-Time Concussion Analyzer collects data from football collisions and sends a report wirelessly to the coach’s cellphone on the sideline, so the coach can make the decision whether or not a player needs to be pulled out of the game. The Real-time Concussion Analyzer could be valuable, not just on a national or collegiate level, but in high school or even pee wee football. See video: WGBY-TV 57.

As Hollot told Connecting Point, “Parents or coaches could have some real-time feedback on impacts that could affect their children.”

Connecting Point added that “Because no matter how old or young the player is, or even who won or lost the game, keeping the brain safe is the final goal.”

ECE undergrads Tim Coyle, Justin Kober, Scott Rosa, and Ken Van Tassell created the Real-Time Concussion Analyzer as their 2013 Senior Design Project. “During a football game, players will typically experience impacts that can result in concussions,” as the students explained the background for their invention. “In most cases, coaches and trainers on the sidelines rely on the players, and their symptoms, to determine if they are injured. However, a player may not experience or show symptoms of a concussion immediately. Our system will provide the likelihood that a player has experienced a concussion, allowing coaches to make more informed decisions pertaining to player safety.”

The students added that “Current solutions exist but do not allow the system to adapt to each player individually. Our product, Real-Time Concussion Analyzer (RCA), is an integrated system that will provide real-time concussion analysis with player-specific adaptability. RCA will collect impact data from player collisions on a continuous basis. The impact data will be analyzed by a concussion detection algorithm. The algorithm will calculate and output the risk of concussion that the player has suffered. This output will be easily interrupted by the coaches and trainers.” (October 2013)