Smart ski vest can detect when you’re falling, deploy airbags before you hit the ground

The protective ski apparel made famous by the likes of James Bond is no longer just fiction. A French company called In&motion has created a smart ski vest that can convert into a full body airbag when its complex sensor system detects changes in the wearer’s movement patterns. It looks like your classic piste jacket, but the Smart Ski Airbag Vest will keep any athlete safe on the slopes.

The vest was displayed at CES as a new product in wearable technology, since its high-tech internal systems are its most impressive feature. Using the same type of sensor technology found in smart watches and fitness trackers, the Smart Ski Airbag Vest can detect motion changes that will most likely result in falls. The sensor suite is made up of a GPS, a gyroscope, and an accelerometer. Once a dangerous angle or sudden change in motion or orientation is detected, the vest can deploy and fully inflate in less than one tenth of a second.

In terms of safety, one of the vest’s most important features is the full airbag design. Instead of just protecting the head and shoulders, Smart Ski Airbag Vest protects the hips, back and vital organs – all body parts that see considerable damage when accidents occur on the slopes. In&motion partnered with the French national Skicross team to develop the vest in advance of their World Cup events, and since then, the International Ski Federation has approved the vest for use by professional athletes in competitive ski events.

The Smart Ski Airbag Vest is scheduled to reach the shelves of pro athletics stores by summer 2016. The vest will retail for about $1,200, but even amateur athletes need to stay safe in dangerous terrain. Considering this will be the first time that an airbag-equipped smart vest will be available outside experimental circles and the professional athletics community, it just might be the hot new ski accessory when next winter rolls around.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: heat-powered watches, phone cases with reflexes

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Photography

These point-and-shoot cameras make your smartphone pics look like cave paintings

If your smartphone camera just isn't giving you the results you're looking for, maybe it's time to step up your game. The latest and greatest point-and-shoot cameras offer large sensors, tough bodies, and long lenses -- something no phone…
Outdoors

Nike’s Adapt BB shoes let you tighten your laces with an iPhone

The new Nike Adapt BB shoe comes with smartphone connectivity that allows the user to tighten the laces using a smartphone while providing the ability to adjust tension throughout the game.
Cars

Toyota recalls another 1.3 million vehicles in U.S. over Takata airbags

Toyota is recalling another 1.3 million vehicles in the U.S. as part of the ongoing Takata airbag replacement program that affects 19 automakers in all. A faulty Takata airbag, if activated, can cause injury or even death.
Emerging Tech

The best 3D printers for 2019

On the hunt for a new 3D printer? We've got your back. Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned veteran, this list of the best 3D printers has what you're looking for.
Emerging Tech

The enormous ‘Flying Bum’ moves toward a commercial design

A prototype of the world's largest aircraft is being retired as the company behind it prepares to build a production model. The new Airlander 10, also known as the "Flying Bum," could be ready for commercial use by 2025.
Emerging Tech

Face-scanning A.I. can help doctors spot unusual genetic disorders

Facial recognition can unlock your phone. Could it also be used to identify whether a person has a rare genetic disorder, based on their facial features? New research suggests it can.
Emerging Tech

Lasers and bovine breathalyzer help determine how much methane cows produce

Cow farts and belches don't sound like catastrophic threats, but they contribute to the massive amounts of methane in the atmosphere. Recently, scientists set out to establish the numbers.
Emerging Tech

Researchers discover a way to make 3D printing 100 times faster using light

Researchers at the University of Michigan have invented a new method of 3D printing which is up to 100 times faster than conventional 3D-printing processes. Here's how it works and why it could prove a game-changer for 3D printing.
Emerging Tech

Why wait? Here are some CES 2019 gadgets you can buy right now

Companies come to CES to wow us with their cutting edge technology, but only a few products are slated to hit the market right away. Here is our list of the best CES 2019 tech you can buy right now.
Emerging Tech

Drones: New rules could soon allow flights over people and at night

With commercial operators in mind, the U.S. government is looking to loosen restrictions on drone flights with a set of proposals that would allow the machines greater freedom to fly over populated areas and also at night.
Emerging Tech

Short film celebrates New Yorker’s amazing robot costumes

New York City resident Peter Kokis creates stunning robot costumes out of household trash. His designs are huge, heavy, and extremely intricate, and never fail to turn heads when he's out and about.
Emerging Tech

Yamaha’s new app lets you tune your motorcycle with a smartphone

It used to be that if you wanted to tune your motorcycle’s engine and tweak its performance, you needed specialized tools and even more specialized knowledge. Yamaha’s new Power Tuner app changes that.
Emerging Tech

In a first for humankind, China is growing plants on the moon

Having recently landed a probe on the far side of the moon, China announced that it managed to grow the first plant on the moon, too. Here's why that matters for deep space travel.