This Smart Bodysuit Gives Superpowers to Aging Bodies

The Aura suit is embedded with motors and sensors that give its users a 'boost' to help with mobility issues. It was designed for exhibition but its creators want to keep continuing the project.
Jessica Miley

Many sportspeople wear tight-fitting clothing that supports blood flow and keeps muscles under compression. Some of these same principles are now being used in conjunction with artificial intelligence to help the less mobile. Superlex Powered Clothing has created the Aura suit a tight-fitting undergarment for elderly people with mobility issues. The bodysuits are form fitting but made of very comfortable material that is machine washable. The suit has built-in motors, batteries and control pads that react to the natural muscle movements and provide power to complement the user's existing strength. The hexagonal pads or"electric muscles" are part of the fabric at the areas with the largest muscle groups, the torso, hips, legs and back. Each uses artificial intelligence to react to the individuals own muscle movements. The suit supports all natural movements including, sitting standing and walking.

Most mobility products are designed to assist the user in their already minimized state, but this suit supports its users to continue to use their muscles and encourages them to go about their daily lives. The design team explained their ideas, saying, "Instead of the design and aesthetic framework of products for the aging market that is stigmatising and reinforces increased marginalisation, the materials and design details of the Superflex design are about comfort, performance and style." The team hopes to continue the development of the garment and eventually create product for market.

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