New life for an abandoned mill

October 1, 2022  |  Swatches

A new cut-and-sew manufacturing operation, called Sparty Mill,  has opened in Lincoln County, N.C., as part of a plan to revive an old mill building. The mill, built in 1905, had previously been home to Duplan Mills, Hudson Hosiery, Chadbourn Industries, Spanco, and six other textile operations, b…
Bio-Based Spandex

October 1, 2022  |  Swatches

Hyosung TNC, one of the world’s largest spandex manufacturers, has created the world’s first bio-based spandex.
Glove senses and grips objects

October 1, 2022  |  Swatches

Scientists at Virginia Tech have developed a glove for grasping things underwater with rubber suckers and a sophisticated sensing capability that mimics an octopus’s unique muscular and nervous systems. The octopus is well equipped to handle objects in the water, facilitated by more than 2,000 suc…
3D printed shoe adapts to ergonomics

October 1, 2022  |  Swatches

In a reinterpretation of classic shoe design, German design studio Wertel Oberfell’s Auxetic Wear is a 3D printed shoe that uses an auxetic structure to adapt itself to the ergonomics of its wearer’s foot. Combining traditional shoemaking with modern technology, the designers emulate techniques …
Twisted soft robots navigate mazes

October 1, 2022  |  Swatches

Researchers from North Carolina State University (NC State) and the University of Pennsylvania have developed soft robots that can navigate complex environments such as mazes without input from humans or computer software.
Blizzbrush cleans teeth in seconds

October 1, 2022  |  Swatches

The Blizzbrush 5.0 Toothbrush-Sponge is an example of a radical change in application using a relatively common material. The new toothbrush design conceived by Chris Martin is meant to optimize tooth-cleaning efficiency, cleaning all over the mouth in just a few seconds by simply biting and grindin…
Smart pillow tracks sleep

October 1, 2022  |  Swatches

Many people who struggle to get enough sleep could benefit from monitoring their sleep, but they have limited options for doing so. In a new study in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, a research team describes a potential solution: a self-powering smart pillow that tracks the position of the h…
Micro-weighted clothing

September 1, 2022  |  Swatches

Athletes and exercise enthusiasts have been training for a long time using weights, but that has generally meant carrying weights, or strapping them to legs or arms. Omorpho Inc., a Portland, Oregon-based start-up, has a better idea; it uses micro-weights embedded in clothing to increase resistance.…
Better protection for wildland firefighters

September 1, 2022  |  Swatches

North Carolina State University (NC State) researchers found that four new designs for shelters to protect firefighters trapped in wildfires could increase the survival time inside the shelter compared with the current industry standard. In lab simulations of wildfire burn-overs—where a wildfire s…
Smart “onesie” tracks movement

September 1, 2022  |  Swatches

Researchers at the University of Helsinki report that they have developed a smart jumpsuit or “onesie” that accurately measures the spontaneous and voluntary movement of infants from the age of five months. The assessment of spontaneous and voluntary movements is part of the neurological examina…