Kraig Labs, Vietnam enter silk-production pact

June 30, 2015

Lansing, Mich.-based spider-silk fabrics developer Kraig Biocraft Laboratories and central and regional governments in Vietnam have signed a memorandum of understanding outlining the creation and rearing of transgenic silkworms in Vietnam. According to the agreement, Kraig Labs and the Vietnamese will jointly develop a cooperative plan for the development and production of Kraig Labs transgenics …

“Wearables for Good” challenge accepting applications

June 29, 2015

UNICEF Innovation, New York, N.Y., has partnered with San Francisco, Calif.-based product strategy and design firm frog and Cambridge, England-based technology company Arm Holdings PLC to launch the “Wearables for Good” challenge. Open to anyone from students to engineers, the challenge invites the global design, technology, business and social communities to identify and develop solutions …

Dish-shaped wireless speaker goes anywhere

June 26, 2015

Ultimate Ears has created the UE ROLL, a disc-shaped, compact wireless speaker that projects 360-degree sound from any Bluetooth-enabled smartphone or tablet in a range of as much as 65 feet. The device has a plasma-coated acoustic skin that protects it from moisture and water. At just 12 ounces, it’s ultimately portable and sports a …

3M to acquire Capital Safety

June 25, 2015

Maplewood, Minn.-based 3M has agreed to acquire Capital Safety from investment firm KKR for a total value of $2.5 billion. Capital Safety of Bloomington, Minn., provides fall-protection equipment. Personal protective equipment is a strategic priority for 3M, with demand for such equipment growing worldwide, driven by increasing regulatory focus on worker safety. Capital Safety’s products …

Heat the furniture, not the room

June 24, 2015

A team at the University of California has received a $2.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency to research a temperature-regulating textile which they hope could reduce heating and air conditioning bills for homes. Joseph Wang, professor of nanoengineering at UC San Diego, says, “In cases where there are …

Finnish cellulose project enters second phase

June 19, 2015

Research to develop new biomaterial applications within the Design Driven Value Chains in the World of Cellulose (DWoC) 2.0 project has entered its second phase. The effort is coordinated by the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd., an Espoo-based research and technology company. Textile applications, such as 3D printing of cellulose, are being developed …

Levi’s® and Google smart jeans partnership called “a natural fit”

The Levi’s® brand and Google share the distinction of profoundly impacting the way people live. Blue jeans changed the way the world dresses; Google’s search technology transformed the way the world finds information. The two companies are now working together on a new challenge named Project Jacquard. The goal is to “confront the historical limitations …

BeBop Sensors that measure physicality wins award

“Smart fabric” developer BeBop Sensors Inc. of Berkeley, Calif., has won a 2015 Frost & Sullivan North American Technology Innovation Award for its fabric sensor technology. The company uses a proprietary Monolithic Fabric Sensor Technology that integrates sensors, traces and electronics into a single piece of fabric. The approach affords greater sensitivity, resolution, range of …

New chef jacket repels liquids and stains

Australian startup Fabricor has created a hydrophobic chef jacket and apron, based on its patented nanotechnology. Chef Adrian Li, cofounder of the company, says he was frustrated with trying to stay clean at work. “As a chef I find it really difficult to keep my chef jacket white, and we like our jackets white for …