Soe 2012

“Soe” is a ‘personal heating’ device.  Ideal for the ones who want to be warmed up without turning on the central heating. The product can be worn like normal clothes. With two layers, “Soe” is not like any other clothes. The first layer contains the heating element and is covered with a small layer of isolating material. What makes the product unique is the second layer. With the elastic fabric, you are able to expand your heating space. The fabric can be stretched around your knees, like you used to do with an old sweater. Everybody is familiar with a zipper and thus interaction in this product is very simple: the more you close the zipper, the warmer you will get. There are 4 stages; off, low, medium and high. LED lights and a vibrator are implemented to give the user feedback whenever they change the heating level. Whenever the user needs to stand up the product can be unplugged on the bottom. This way the user is able to wear “Soe” while answering the door of phone.

Getting Soe warm is done by an heating wire controlled with PWM (Pulse Width Modulation).  The heating wire is sewn between two layers of fabric. The fabric is not only avoiding direct contact with the hot wire, but also spreads the heat equally among the surface. LED’s were configured in arduino and programmed to blink according to the heating level. Yellow = Low, Orange = Medium and Red = High. The regular arduino motherboard is too big to attach onto clothes. Therefore a lilypad (wearable arduino) is used. A small vibrator gives the user feedback whenever they change heating level. To connect all the components, a conductive wired is used and sewn into the fabric. For a complete demonstration of the prototype watch the following video.