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Solar-panelled jeans, light-emitting bandages and a dress that reads its wearer’s mind

  • The EU-funded DEPHOTEX project has developed flexible and lightweight solar cells that can be stitched into a range of fabrics, including clothes like jeans or coats, and the energy generated could be used to charge your mobile phone. According to the project coordinator, Fanny Breuil, from the Cetemmsa Technological Centre in Spain, ‘solar-powered personal devices could soon be on the market.’ © Dephotex Consortium
  • Belgian 3D printing company Materialise recently partnered with Dutch fashion designer Anouk Wipprecht and Italian architect Niccolo Casas to create the 3D-printed ‘Synapse Dress’. It monitors the wearer’s interactions with their surroundings and what they are focusing on by tracking their brain activity and heart rate via a connected headset and sensors in the bodice. A proximity sensor can tell how close people are, and if the dress picks up changes in the wearer when people are standing very close, it wi
  • Fishing is one of the most dangerous occupations, with more than 25 % of all accidents in the industry coming from fishermen falling or being pulled overboard. The EU-funded Safe@Sea project has developed protective clothing to increase the safety of fishermen working offshore. The prototype protective suit has sensors embedded to detect if a fisherman falls into the water – known as the ‘man overboard system’. It is activated when submerged and enables GPS tracking. The suit has shock absorber materials fo
  • The EU-funded PLACE-IT project has combined phototherapy with textiles, creating a bandage which emits blue light to provide pain relief for back ache and repetitive strain injuries. The blue light stimulates the release of nitric oxide which relaxes the blood vessel walls, increasing blood flow. It also leads to the release of heat energy, which gives a soothing sensation. © Centre for Microsystems Technology, IMEC and Gent University
  • The EU-funded MyWear project has designed sensors for t-shirts and socks which can be linked to smartphones to monitor and display health indicators such as heart rate, respiratory rate and plantar pressure for elderly, obese, diabetic and disabled people. The project is preparing the technology for commercialisation. © MyWear
  • The EU-funded BIOTEX project has created biosensors in a wearable textile patch that can analyse body fluids, even a tiny drop of sweat, to assess a person’s health. The project has also created textile sensors to measure respiration and blood oxygen levels, with potential applications for people working in extreme environments, in sports and in medicine. © Artechnique/ CEA