Clothes that cool body down among ideas at startup event
SINGAPORE — Clothes that can dissipate heat and cool the body down, adhesive stickers that release an antibacterial agent when rubbed, and a special dog collar that tweets owners information about their pet’s health and well-being. These were among the wearable technologies featured at a showcase organised by Exploit Technologies (ETPL) together with Startup Asia 2014 yesterday.
Held bi-annually in Singapore and Indonesia, the Startup Asia conference showcases new and product-ready technologies born in the region.
Some of the design concepts featured at the conference were the result of a three-day boot camp organised by ETPL in March, which saw scientists and designers coming together to brainstorm and develop viable prototypes that could be commercialised in the near future.
As the technology transfer arm of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), ETPL supports the research of A*STAR scientists by translating their inventions into marketable products or processes. They also help engage industry leaders and players to commercialise the organisation’s technologies.
One such technology is M-KOOL, an innovative cooling pad that can be used in fabrics to help regulate body temperatures.
It was developed by Dr Shah Kwok Wei, a researcher at A*STAR’s Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE).
With M-KOOL, a garment is able to absorb heat from the wearer’s body and release it, keeping the wearer cool.
This innovative product was one of 10 early-stage prototypes that were showcased in the Next-To-The-Skin exhibit at the conference.
Although wearable technology has been in the market for quite a long time, Ms Radiana Soh, assistant vice-president of ETPL, said the hype only came about in the past two years due to the launch of Google glasses and Sony smart watches.
“There is actually a huge trend of wearable technology coming from overseas. If we are able to tap on current capabilities in Singapore, it can fuel new innovations that are very useful for companies both here and overseas,” she added.