Wearable technology used in spaceflight has many applications. Electronic sensing, interaction and computing designed into comfortable on-body form factors has the potential to augment human capabilities while improving safety, efficiency, autonomy and ergonomics. This paper discussed design methods for improving the E-SEWT (Electronic-textile System for the Evaluation of Wearable Technology) project for The Wearable Electronics Application and Research Lab (WEAR Lab) in the Avionic Systems Division at the NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC).
The E-SEWT project is a design-centered study of the form and function of a reconfigurable smart garment to be worn on board the International Space Station (ISS). This specialized garment consists of a base unit and removable sensor components, called “swatches,” which allow the garment to be customized by the wearer to complete a particular task or simply for personal preference. The study focuses on mobility, ergonomics, comfort and ease of use while maintaining optimal data flow. Using wearables built into garments is a key focus of research for Pailes-Friedman and her students at Pratt Institute.