VTT has tested methods in designing clothing for long-distance runners in different temperatures.

VTT Technical Research Center of Finland Ltd. has developed new technology to address the thermal, moisture and technical-flow behavior of smart clothing.

The temperature of smart clothing, for example, is automatically adjusted according to the wearer’s individual needs. The technology is also suited to demanding conditions such as hospitals and sports, VTT said.

In its Smart Clothing project, VTT developed a technology that can be utilized in smart fabrics and clothing, able to calculate whether the wearer needs to be cooled or warmed based on initial data measured from the person and the environment.

This technology is also able to determine the needed warming or cooling power so that the thermal sensation of the person wearing the smart clothing remains optimal in varying conditions. The smart fabrics and clothing currently on the market face the challenge of adjusting the individual temperature of a human body rapidly and automatically according to the wearer’s actual need.

The technology is based on the Human Thermal Model calculation tool developed by VTT that enables the calculation of a person’s individual thermal sensation from the prevailing conditions. Individual thermal sensations are ultimately caused by differences in body composition. There are statistically significant differences between men and women, for example, because men have on average muscle mass than women.

The wearable smart technology developed by VTT can be applied extensively even in demanding conditions, such as hospitals, nursing homes, and different consumer groups such as police officers, firemen, soldiers, outdoor workers, athletes and small babies.

The Taiwan Textile Research Institute has tested VTT’s methods in designing clothing for long-distance runners in different temperatures. The technology can also be utilized when developing solutions for individual recovery after a sporting event.

“VTT is now looking for companies to join in the development and production of this technology for the market,” said Pekka Tuomaala, principal scientist at VTT. “We also have extensive technological know-how, for example in fiber technology of the future, functional clothing solutions such as microfluidics and detectors, sensors and the Internet of Things.”

VTT is part of Finland’s innovation system and operates under the mandate of the Ministry of Employment and the Economy.