The title may inspire a war movie scene that will take place in a while, but that is not what it is about.
Since 2020, the Armed Forces of the main countries have been designing special combat suits that reduce the metabolic wear and tear of soldiers through exoskeletons attached to the user’s body, greatly increasing their vigor and performance in tasks that require a lot of effort and precision. Now the phase is coming in the functional fabrics with which military uniforms are being made.
There are two major inputs in this textile area:
1. the first group has an emphasis on “wearable technology”, that is, fabrics made with metallic threads that conduct energy through the surface of the fabric, being able to measure from the heart rhythm and temperature, until heating the skin when it is entering a hypothermic stage, below 34ºC.
I believe that this group of products with embedded technology of conducting wires in fabrics will develop very quickly, as connectivity is being expanded with new data navigation through the 5G generation, these intelligent fabrics, in addition to providing a better comfort experience for users, they will be able to promote greater agility in making decisions, as the data is being captured and transmitted in real-time.
In the Polar Seal brand video, you can see how the “wearable” technology was impregnated in the sweater fabric managing thermal comfort during the most demanding activities or even when relaxing after finishing them.
2. The second group is fabrics with reinforcement of Graphene, graphite, and carbon nanotubes, high-performance materials in terms of heat dissipation, resistance to rupture, impact absorption, lightness, and temperature regulation.
This is really disruptive technology, but commercial viability is still slow due to the process of making graphene and carbon nanotubes.
However, we already have a light on the horizon because the MIT Institute of the USA, created the equipment for the production of Graphene called CVD Technology = Chemical Vapor Deposit which speeds up the industrial process and reduces its costs.
In recent military ‘fairs, we can see prototypes of the Combat Uniforms of the Future Soldier 2025 Project from two great world military potentials: the Russian model called Ratnik-4 and the American model called Exoskeleton Protection System, where these technologies have already been used in these uniform combat prototypes and are currently being tested by special teams.
Unlike the military combat suits sector, in outdoors functional clothing niches, we can already find brands like Graphene X that has already adopted graphene technology, launching the first waterproof & weatherproof jacket made with graphene and multiple properties and performance.