Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Solar Powered Ski Jacket by Zegna

Famed Italian fashion designer Ermenegildo Zegna, in collaboration with Germany’s Interactive Wear that produces amazing innovations in ‘smart’ textile technology, brings to the world the world’s first solar-powered ski jacket. The slightly hefty price (hey, it’s a Zegna!) of $1,350 apiece may be justified if you look at the corollary benefit: you can also charge your cell phone or iPod while out on the ski slopes.

The Microtene jacket is waterproof, and comes with its own solar cells connected internally within its neoprene collar. You will be a walking (or skiing) carrier of renewable power since what you’re wearing converts sunlight into energy. If you don’t want to be carrying the solar converter, you may detach the collar and use it as a power source. This is sheer convenience and, yes, power! No more problems with cell phones, cameras, or iPods that have run out of electrical charge while you’re on top of a snowy mountain.

Interactive Wear has also pioneered another textile technology called iThermX. This one is capable of generating heat, this time. The technology is applied in Thermotec, a new line of sensor-controlled heating snow gloves from Reusch. Fashion has, indeed, become ‘intelligent.’ Among recent innovations along this line are a man’s suits that can control hidden electronic devices through an ordinary touching of the sleeve. Yes, think James Bond and there is also a kiddie backpack that can send SOS to the police. Via

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