Myant‘s Tony Chahine reimagined human presence at ApplySci’s recent Wearable Tech + Digital Health + Neurotech conference at Stanford:
Join ApplySci at the 9th Wearable Tech + Digital Health + Neurotech Boston conference on September 24, 2018 at the MIT Media Lab. Speakers include: Rudy Tanzi – Mary Lou Jepsen – George Church – Roz Picard – Nathan Intrator – Keith Johnson – Juan Enriquez – John Mattison – Roozbeh Ghaffari – Poppy Crum – Phillip Alvelda – Marom Bikson
SenseGo smart socks have multiple sensors that monitor pressure from poor posture, over-exertion, or ill-fitting shoes, all which could lead to diabetic foot ulcers. Pressure points are registered as electrical signals, and relayed to an app which informs the patient of a developing risk.
The washable sensor socks, developed by Hebrew University professor Yaakov Nahmias, can compensate for damaged nerve sensations, providing patients with data on pain that they are unable to feel. Failure to treat these issues could lead to foot ulcers, sores, or wounds that do not heal, hence the benefit of this “early warning” system.
ApplySci has described several examples of smart shirts and smart fabrics in recent months. Now, Lumo his integrated sensors into shorts to monitor cadence, stride length, pace, distance and pelvic rotation in runners. Placed inside the waistband, the sensors sync with smartphones to provide real time feedback, and the app sends data and coaching content post-run.
TruPosture is a smart shirt with embedded nanosensors that continuously measure the curvature of one’s spine. It is being crowdfunded on indiegogo.
The wearer, and a physical therapist, set a personalized posture goal. When the spine diverges, vibrations are sent as posture reminders. One vibration burst happens when a wearer is leaning too far forward, and two bursts happen when he/she leans too far back.
Posture performance is tracked over time through an app. The data can be shared with doctors or therapists, or integrated with fitness wearables.
The shirt has embedded silver fibers to track heart rate, heart variability, breathing depth and recovery, intensity of movement, energy output, stress levels, steps taken, and calories burned. One must also wear a “black box” device to receive the sensor data and to capture activity information.
The data is then transmitted to an iOS app, which offers cardio, agility and strength workouts, live fitness monitoring, and exertion and effort ratings. The sensor data adapts the app’s workouts to the wearer’s performance in real time.
The team, led by Veena Misra, is developing tiny devices harvesting energy from body heat (which creates thermal energy) and body motion (which creates mechanical energy). They can be used on various areas of the body.
a piezoelectric-coated film, on nickel foil, encapsulated in kapton tape, that harvests energy from elbow movement
a flexible wristband made of polymers integrated with a TEG, low-power chips, and a low-power radio.
a wireless wrist platform that measures arterial blood pressure and blood oxygen saturation, and can track airborne pollutants.
small, wearable sensors that monitor a person’s immediate environment and vital signs to understand asthma triggers.
The optimal sensor position is a person’s pulse points, where blood vessels are close to the skin’s surface. Textiles are ideal for measurements, because they conform to the body and provide the thermal insulation to maintain a temperature difference. The researchers are trying to interconnect electronics from multiple garment locations so that they can communicate with each other.
ApplySci believes that a continuous power source is key to the effectiveness of wearable health sensors. ASSIST, IMEC/Holst, the University of Virginia, and others, seem to be providing the basis for this.
Google’s Project Jacquard creates conductive fabrics that can be woven into every day clothes. The yarn is tough enough for industrial weaving, and can connect to chips that react to gestures, and monitor heart rate or body temperature.
This seamless integration of sensors into clothing can make health monitoring ubiquitous.
In a demo at the company’s I/O conference, the fabric turned on lights, controlled a media player, and powered two touch-tracking to visualize the interaction. Low-power wifi was used to communicate with devices.
Vigour, by Pauline van Dongen, is a sensor sweater developed for geriatric rehabilitation. The knitted cardigan, with integrated stretch sensors, discreetly and continuously monitors upper body movement. Two sensors monitor lower back movement, and one under each arm monitors shoulder and arm movement. Data is transferred to the user, caregiver, or physician. It can be worn all day, during normal activity, rest, and exercise. Its app provides visual and auditory feedback, in real time, to inform and motivate the user.
Microsoft‘s SWARM prototype smart scarf, developed with University of Maryland‘s Michele Williams, heats, which could help those with physical or mental disabilities stay warm. It also vibrates. The plan is to incorporates biometric sensors that can cause vibrations when an issue is detected with heart, breathing rate, or skin temperature data.
The flexible laser-cut scarf has interchangeable heat and vibration producing modules, linked with metal snaps. It is made of industrial felt and conductive copper taffeta.
Why this project is in a very early stage, ApplySci believes that it is indicative of the forthcoming wave of multi-purpose wearables.