The Nova illuminated smart jacket will help you run safer at night

Runners are always looking for new and creative ways to stay more visible while jogging after dark. Many wear headlamps, flashing wrist bands, or reflective vests to help motorists spot them more easily on the road, but even with those tools at their disposal there are still plenty of accidents each year involving runners and motorized vehicles. But a new smart jacket is hoping to change that by delivering comfort, performance, and higher visibility in a single package.

The Nova running jacket includes an array of impressive features, not the least of which is a series of green lights integrated into the front and back shoulders of the garment itself. Those lights offer two brightness levels – or can be set to blink – allowing the runner to be visible from as far away as 450 feet. A rechargeable battery pack that weighs just half an ounce is included with the jacket, and is capable of keeping the lights powered on for up to 8 hours at a time. That battery slips conveniently into its own hidden pocket for easy storage.

Nova Smart Jacket

As with most running jackets, the Nova features an athletic cut designed to hug the body without impeding motion. Its fabrics stretch and move naturally with the runner, providing a full range of motion. Those same fabrics are wind and waterproof, providing good protection from the elements, and despite being thin and relatively lightweight, they are surprisingly warm. Best of all, despite the integrated lights, the Nova is still machine washable, making it easy to keep clean.

Other nice features of the Nova smart jacket include a stowaway hood, thumb holes to help keep your hands warm, and reflective elements embedded on the cuffs. A waterproof pocket, made specifically for a smartphone is built into the right sleeve, while an integrated headphone port makes it easy to run a set of wired earbuds directly to that device.

Nova launched on Indiegogo today with the hopes of collecting enough crowdfunding to turn it into a real product that runners will be able to buy. If successful, it should go on sale early next year. Early-bird supporters can pre-order one now for just $99, which is a 44-percent discount from its full retail price.

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