when it comes to innovative tech for the elderly, the mind jumps to helper-bots, to smart homes and facilitative infrastructure. there can be a tendency to mollycoddle, promoting a static or sedentary life, when more often the opposite approach is needed. unveiled at london design museum’s exhibition NEW OLD, the aura powered suit is a collaboration between designer yves béhar and superflex, a powered clothing company that recently split off from the robotics lab of SRI international. 

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when it comes to innovative tech for the elderly, the mind jumps to helper-bots & smart homes

 

 

superflex’s powered suit is heading for a targeted release sometime around around the middle of 2018. jam-packed with motors, sensors and artificial intelligence, the aura suit is a lightweight layer that effectively acts as a second supportive skin. small electronic ‘muscles’ allow the suit to provide subtle, individualized support to the user, responding to and assisting with motions like standing up & sitting down, balance and general mobility. rather than just doing the job for you, aura gives you the strength and support to do it for yourself. 

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the aura suit is a lightweight layer that effectively acts as a second supportive skin

 

 

all of the suit’s power centers are housed in hexagonally shaped low-profile shells whose origami like fabric composition allow movement in three dimensions. in this way, the suit can grow or shrink to meet the needs of the wearer, and ensures the support it provides is specific to its user. a V-shaped band hugs the body at targeted points, providing necessary support and maximising ergonomics. the exhibited suit highlights this band, and, through color coding, makes a point of accentuating how the suit’s design connects each of the body’s main muscle points. the final product however, promises to be elegant, minimal and almost invisible. weighing in at less than three pounds, the potential for the technology to change lives is enormous. 

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all of the suit’s power centers are housed in hexagonally shaped low-profile shells

 

 

‘when we talk about designing for an ageing population, the standard approach has been to provide aid in the home – completing tasks, welfare modules, accommodating lack of mobility — which results in a life lived more statically. but what if technology could help us continue to move about the world and engage with it, physically, socially and emotionally?’ asks yves béhar, whose studio fuseproject joined forces with superflex to work on the suit. ‘this is the question superflex is answering with the concept of powered clothing: to empower us by enhancing our physical ability so we can continue to live actively. I’m thrilled to join the team creating that vision.’

 
the aura powered suit will be on display at the london design museum’s NEW OLD exhibition until february 19th, 2017.

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the suit can grow or shrink to the meet the needs of the wearer

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suit is heading for a targeted release sometime around around the middle of 2018.

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the final product promises to be elegant, minimal and almost invisible

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a V shaped band keeps the suit snug against the body

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the suit provides support to the body’s core centers of strength

yves béhar powered suit
the potential for the technology to change lives is enormous

 

  • Very neat indeed. But for the practicallity part: How does one wash it?

    S says:

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