Pauline van Dongen, Pioneer Of Wearable Tech Garments

Muchaneta Kapfunde | @FashNerdEditor

Love the idea of an everyday shirt that generates enough power to keep your phone charged so it is always ready when you need it? Well renowned fashion designer Pauline van Dongen has made this fashion idea come to life.

Pauline van Dongen Wearable Solar Shirt
The Solar Shirt is joint development by Pauline van Dongen & Holst Centre.

Introducing the Solar Shirt, a garment that successfully brings high tech and high-street fashion together. We are wowed by Dongen’s creation of a  shirt that combines solar panels and flexible electronics that can charge your smartphone or other portable devices such as MP3 players, cameras, GPS systems and all USB-compatible handheld or portable devices.

Generating power from 120 thin-film solar cells integrated into the fabric itself, on a nice sunny day the Solar Shirt can produce around 1 W of electricity which  is just enough to charge your phone.  The science behind the shirt comes down to the solar cells which are combined into standardized functional modules using Holst Centre‘s vast solar cell know-how developed within the Solliance alliance. This technology is part of a research program on wearable applications that integrates functionalities ranging from lighting (LED/OLED), energy harvesting (PV), sensors and displays, in textile or other flexible materials.

On the collaboration with the talented Dutch designer, Holst Centre’s Margreet de Kok stated; “Our technology enables extremely thin electronics that are stretchable, flexible and washable. It can be integrated into fabrics using standard high-volume techniques that are well known in the textile industry. The maturity of the technology means textile manufactures could bring functional fabrics to market in a matter of months using existing production facilities. Pauline is one of the leading names in wearable technology, and her design shows how technology and fashion can complement each other to create desirable clothing that has a function.”

We love the idea of technology and design being seamlessly integrated. Enough of the one-off haute couture designs boasting technology, it is about time that we take an every day garment and create something wonderfully innovative for the everyday consumer. On this note we say bravo Pauline van Dongen, you are indeed a pioneer in the field of wearable technology garments.

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