Sep 1, 2015
Japanese company develops wearable material that measures vital signs
Sep 1, 2015
Textile company Toyobo has developed a material that can take biological readings such as heart and respiratory rate and sweat levels when applied to the underside of garments.
Called Cocomi, it is a highly conductive, pasty material that is placed between a resin, thus serving as electrodes and a circuit, says the company in a press release.
The portion touching the skin receives faint electrical signals from the muscles and sends that data to a smartphone or other device to be displayed.
Toyobo thinks the material will find a practical use in sportswear due to its thin and highly elastic properties. Cocomi is only 0.3 mm thick.
Achieving this elasticity was a challenge, reveals the company, as conventional conductive materials are not elastic and lack precision due to its inability to accurately track body movements.
Toyobo said the material will also be useful in other fields, such as medicine.
The Japanese manufacturer hopes to commercialize the material in the 2017 fiscal year, for which it forecasts sales of 200 million yen ($1.6 million dollars), by partnering with apparel makers.
Last year, the textile company Toray and the Japanese telephone company NTT presented a similar project, a fabric that could measure the pulse rate and other vital signs.
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