Visionaries at Bayer, a German high tech company directed their research power on photovoltaic according to a recently published press release.
The for us noticeable statement can be found towards the end of the press release stating ‘In future, photovoltaic applications could extend far beyond traditional solar modules. One such application could be a “translator shirt” for traveling salesmen and other people who travel a lot.
During a conversation, voice recognition software would be used to display the translated words on the shirt. “The surfaces of certain textiles can be equipped with photovoltaic elements, while other areas exhibit the properties of batteries. This would provide the power supply for the shirt,” explains Eckard Foltin from the Creative Center at Bayer MaterialScience.
The wearer of such high tech shirt would have to start the program and enter the target language via a label with integrated microphone and translation unit.
The optimism for envisioning the feasibility of a Translator shirt comes from the research Bayer scientists have made into photovoltaic thin-layer solar cells, Makrofol® polycarbonate encapsulation films that make it possible to produce flexible photovoltaic modules.
Based on the same technology and production processes not only solar cells can be made flexible enough to be integrated into fibers and textiles but also other silicon based functionality. And silicon after all is at the core of all electronics around us.
A translator shirt would be for sure a big hit in the market, imagine being able to buy one at the airport shop before you get on the plane to that great, distance location and your shirt is doing the speaking (or at least translation) for you.