Want some bespoke medical technology designed to act in place of your rib-cage, designed by some of the very best in the business? Then hiring McLaren, specifically McLaren Applied Technologies, is probable your best course of action. That’s how we got to see Project Invincible, a one-off medical project that incorporates materials that will be seen in upcoming Formula One vehicles.
Project Invincible sounds like something that an ageing industrialist would institute on learning that they’re getting old and the reality… probably isn’t far off. The engineering team involved was tasked with creating a body shield — for a client who is never named — that could act in place of the rib-cage to project the body’s organs after surgery.
But there were a few conditions. It needed to be lightweight and something that could be concealed under clothing. The garment that arose from an extensive consulting and testing process comprises a shield that disperses impact to where it is absorbed away out of any danger areas by a woven fabric undershirt. Materials used include carbon fibre, Dyneema fibres (the kind seen in body armour), advanced resins, and Zylon — the material used to protect F1 drivers in the event of a side impact. It probably cost a pretty penny too.
It takes quite a sum to be able to hire the likes of the McLaren team for… anything really but the end result is a piece of medical tech that could be adapted with relatively little effort — though we suspect that the F1 materials will still set you back some. Still, it’d be worth paying for it to protect your chest and ribs after extensive open-heart surgery or something similar. If your medical aid will cover it, that is.
For a deeper dive into how Project Invincible came about, hit up the video below. Everything from the initial design to testing and fabrication is covered.
Source: McLaren Applied Technologies