Giro reimagines MIPS integration with Aether helmet

Liner eliminated in favor of two-piece shell, dubbed MIPS Spherical

In a first for cycling, Giro has created a road helmet with a pivoting two-piece shell that acts as a MIPS component. The Giro Aether uses what the company calls MIPS Spherical, which it first used in a ski-race helmet.

The design lets Giro offer the benefits of MIPS — reducing rotational strain on the brain — without some of the negatives sometimes associated with it, such as compromises in a helmet's fit or ventilation.

The new Giro Aether MIPS
The new Giro Aether MIPS

MIPS Spherical and the Giro Aether

MIPS Spherical was developed by Giro in partnership with MIPS. Like all MIPS designs, the concept is to allow the head to move slightly inside the helmet in the event of a crash to reduce rotational impact on the brain. But instead of a liner attached to the inside of a helmet shell, MIPS Spherical uses one foam shell inside another. Giro first used this in the Avance MIPS.

The Aether MIPS has a six-piece shell and a semi-transparent skeletal structure that Giro calls AURA. 

The internal dual-density shell moves slightly inside the outer foam shell
The internal dual-density shell moves slightly inside the outer foam shell

Giro claims the ventilation is better than its Synthe MIPS — 2°F cooler when riding, according to its tests using a heated headform inside its in-house wind tunnel. 

Regarding aerodynamics, Giro is still testing that, but marketing manager Dain Zaffke said the initial tests "looked very promising".

The Aether MIPS is better ventilated than the Synthe MIPS, Giro says
The Aether MIPS is better ventilated than the Synthe MIPS, Giro says

Giro's Roc Loc 5+ Air controls fit, with three vertical settings, a dial circumference adjustment and rear width adjustment.

Europe and North America will have slightly different models, based on the respective CE and CPSC requirements. Weight for a medium CE helmet is roughly 240g and a CPSC medium will be about 250g, Giro claims.

Nine styles will be available in August for £260 / $325 / €299 / AU$429. 

Giro has a number of in-house tests designed to replicate crashes and measure the impact on the helmet and the head
Giro has a number of in-house tests designed to replicate crashes and measure the impact on the helmet and the head

Ben Delaney

US Editor-in-Chief
Ben has been writing about bikes since 2000, covering everything from the Tour de France to Asian manufacturing to kids' bikes. The former editor-in-chief of VeloNews, he began racing in college while getting a journalism degree at the University of New Mexico. Based in the cycling-crazed city of Boulder, Colorado, with his wife and two kids, Ben enjoys riding most every day.
  • Discipline: Road (paved or otherwise), cyclocross and sometimes mountain. His tri-curious phase seems to have passed, thankfully
  • Preferred Terrain: Quiet mountain roads leading to places unknown
  • Current Bikes: Scott Foil Team Issue, Specialized S-Works Tarmac, Priority Eight city bike... and a constant rotation of test bikes
  • Dream Bike: A BMC Teammachine SLR01 with disc brakes and clearance for 30mm tires (doesn't yet exist)
  • Beer of Choice: Saison Dupont
  • Location: Boulder, CO, USA

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