Body Rocket’s drag-measuring kit claims to be a “wind tunnel on your bike”

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Posted on October 26, 2022 by

The Body Rocket is a new sensor kit designed to measure drag in real time, helping you achieve optimal positioning on your bike in all situations. By combining sensors at the seatpost, handlebars and pedals, it measures speed, weight, power output and more to give you a live CdA figure right on your Garmin bike computer, so you can allowing you to see instant feedback on your position.

The system is seeking investments in the United States and has just closed a European funding round of €439,000. Former hour record holder Alex Dowsett is among their advisors and investors, and they work with several top road and triathlon pros and coaches. Here are the details…

How does Body Rocket measure drag?

The difference between Body Rocket and other systems we’ve seen is that it uses multiple components to measure a wide variety of forces. To date, the measurement of drag on the bike comes from a clamp-on air pressure sensor with a stud that protrudes from the front (see Note, SwissSide, AeroPod and Velosense).

These systems measure the drag of the rider + bike system, giving you a total CdA number that combines the drag created by your body and the bike itself. Body Rocket says it’s hard to isolate the impact to your body compared to a component swap, where you can simultaneously alter your riding position slightly.

Body rocket drag sensors on the bike

Instead, Body Rocket places (at least) three sensors on the bike, one under the saddle, the handlebars, and the pedals. This isolates the rider from the bike and adds other metrics to the data.

Body weight is one of them, as is downward force. This allows them to see how your weight changes (sweat loss) over long distance events changes your CdA number. It also shows them how you tweak your body position and weight balance between saddle and handlebars…not just micro-adjustments to stay comfortable, but how you can favor one leg over another, weigh the bar during attacks, climbs and descents, etc.

They also measure horizontal forces, indicating how far the wind pushes you (or drag pulls you) backward relative to the bike.

rocket drag sensor prototype on a bicycle

And, hidden somewhere in there are air pressure and wind speed sensors, but they say they’re going to be thinned and lightened (and could be an extra part that gets added to the bike, which you see on some of their bike tests.

body rocket drag sensors for bike pedals

The system is still in development, so these images are renders and the look and feel may change… and there is no current explanation of how these pedal inserts (rigs?) work. Other than that, no, they don’t add stack height, and “the pedal sensors are actually integrated into our proprietary pedal system which is part of the complete system”.

So, no, you can’t use your own pedals, but their system will have a built-in power meter, so you don’t need to add one to your bike just to use it. They will be compatible with Look cleats initially.

They say there are two different stem or handlebar options planned, but initially it will focus on aero extensions for TT, track and triathlon applications.

chart showing what the body rocket system measures on a bike

The target price range is between €1,500 and €2,000, with an exit target of mid to late 2023. For now, they invite interested parties to contact them directly for investment opportunities. .

BodyRocket.cc

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