A product innovation consultancy has teamed up with one of the designers of the Philips and Levi’s ICD+ wearable MP3 and cellphone garments from 2000 to produce a concept commuting jacket with electroluminescent muscle-fibre graphics. Want to take it to market? Call PDD Group Ltd. of London.

Jacket lights up at night, no Scotchlite in sight

The Illum jacket is the result of a collaboration between PDD and independent apparel design consultancy Goose Design and is part of PDD’s Futures programme.

“We wanted to address a genuine consumer need rather than just being creative for the sake of it,” said Miles Hawley, head of industrial design at PDD.

“We identified urban cyclists as a suitable consumer group and looked at a number of issues that affect their lives."

Designer Jenni Arksey of Goose Design, who helped develop the now discontinued line of ICD+ products from Levi Strauss and Philips Research, said:

"Although we were flexible about what we were going to end up with we didn’t want the kind of wearable technology that consists of devices that have been bolted on or sewn in to existing clothing. We wanted to create something flexible that could be worn, washed, damaged, stitched up and thrown into a bag just like any other jacket.”

The Illum concept jacket features electroluminescent surface graphics, activated by a soft-switch set into the cuff and powered by an integrated thin film battery that provides the small charge needed to activate the lighting via a transparent, printable conductive layer. A further printable polymer forms a photovoltaic solar cell used to recharge the battery.





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