A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Skiers Get d3o-Based 'Impact Suits'
In their 1971 novel The Flying Sorcerors, science fiction writers David Gerrold and Larry Niven wrote about an impossible idea - a suit that was both flexible all over and hard as armor all over:
It was my impact suit," Purple said. He took a step forward and thumped himself hard in the belly with this fist. His belly was big and soft, so the blow should have made him wince. It did not. I thought for a moment that Purple had become rigid as stone.
"My impact suit," he repeated. "Normally it flows like cloth, but under a sharp blow it becomes a single rigid unit.
(Read more about Gerrold and Niven's impact suit)
Thirty-five years later, US and Canadian skiers get to wear one! Spyder, a skiwear company based in Colorado, is working with d3o labs to incorporate a special material that hardens in "extreme" circumstances (like in a fall, for example).
The material is one of a class of similar materials that have been used for applications as diverse as body armor and rehabilitative exoskeletons. The material that d3o uses is a mixture of a viscous liquid and a polymer; once the d3o material has been synthesized, it is poured into a mold according to the application. When at rest (or when gently flexed), the molecules within the material can flow past one another. When a sudden deformation is applied, the molecules lock, forming a shield.
(d3o-based ski suits)
Although the material is available only to Olympic atheletes at the present time, Spyder will offer ski racing apparel with d3o technology starting in September of this year.
Find out about other uses for similar materials: take a look at Liquid Armor In Two Flavors: Shear Thickening and Magnetorheological and AKROD v2 - Active Knee Rehabilitation Device. Read more about ski suits at the d3o Lab website; thanks to Ruth Gough of d3o Lab for writing with this story.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 2/14/2006)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 11 )
Related News Stories -
Fabrican Dress Sprayed Directly Onto Model On Coperni Runway
'...that might appeal to women, because by discharging from a few or a few dozen bottles a liquid that immediately set into fabrics... they could have a new creation every time.' - Stanislaw Lem, 1961.
Hip'Safe Airbag For Seniors, From Helite
'Other airbags go off around her torso and pelvis...' - Neal Stephenson, 1992.
iSphere Plastique Fantastique Face Mask Alternative
'Among these were some clad in the insulated space-suits, with their transparent glassite helmets.' - Edmond Hamilton, 1931.
Inkjet-Printed Wearable Solar Cells
Ultra-thin wearable organic photovoltaic material.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Ulm Sleep Pods For The Homeless
'The lid lifted and she crawled inside...'
Prophetic Offers Lucid Dreaming Halo With Morpheus-1 AI
''Leads trail away from insertion points on her face and wrist... to a lucid dreamer...'
More Like A Tumblebug Than A Motorcycle
'It is about the size and shape of a kitchen stool, gyro-stabilized on a single wheel...'
Tesla Camera-Only Vision Predicted In 1930's SF
'By its means, the machine can see.'
First Ever Proof Of Water On Asteroids
'Yes, strangely enough there was still sufficient water beneath the surface of Vesta.'
Aptera Solar EV More Stylish Than Heinlein Steel Tortoise
'When confronted by hills, or rough terrain, it did not stop, but simply slowed until the task demanded equaled its steady power output.'
Gigantic Space Sunshade Would Fight Global Warming
'...the light of the sun had been polarized by two crossed fields so that no radiation could pass.'
Untethered Spacewalk's 50th Anniversary
'But that space walk of mine wasn't so very amazing.'
ESA Designs Huge Inflatable Moonbase
'It was like being inside a balloon; indeed, that was exactly where he was.'
AlphaGarden Robot Cares For Gardens Better Than Humans
'...a simple clock-set servok with pipe and hose arms.'
Let's Make Slaver Sunflowers! Engineering Plants To Reflect Light
'The mirror-blossom was a terrible weapon.'
TeslaBot Uber Driver (2024) And The Automatic Motorist (1911)
'Robots have worse problems than anybody'
DiffuseBot Uses Generative AI To Invent New Soft Robots
'It embodies several small-scale multiple stampers, apparently for dealing with sheet metal.'
Philips Smart Palm Recognition Smart Deadbolt
'A palm lock must be keyed to one individual's hand shape...'
BMind Smart Mirror from Baracoda
Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who has the greatest wellness of all?
Ballie Your AI Robot Companion From Samsung
Projects your content anywhere you like.
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories