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Real smart: Protective clothing with built-in A/C
Date:5/14/2012

mbranes using diode lasers proved to be much more reliable than the conventional method, with the seam remaining soft and flexible. In addition the Empa specialists were able to increase the evaporation rate and therefore the cooling ability.

But that wasn't all. In order to simplify refilling the cool pads with water they developed a portable filling station that can be attached to the vest with a quick-release fastener. During the same pit stop, the mini fans can be exchanged for those with freshly charged batteries. Then the vest is ready once again for three to four hours of duty.

Comparative measurements show that the new vest is significantly lighter and also cools much better than systems currently on the market. And in practical use, too, the vest has proven its worth. Staff of the Zrich City police force tested the vest over several warm summer days and gave the new innovation the thumbs up. The first small series of the novel under-uniform protective vest will be produced in the near future by project partner Unico swiss tex GmbH. The smart cooling technology is, however, also suitable for protective suits worn over normal clothing, uniform jackets, camouflage suits and even for rucksacks. Developments along these lines are already in progress.


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Contact: Markus Weder
markus.weder@empa.ch
41-587-657-774
Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (EMPA)
Source:Eurekalert

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