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Smart Wrap wins Intelligent Material and Design award
Jun '11
After its successful participation in the Interzum Awards in 2007 and 2009, Bekaert Textiles managed to win another award this year. Its Smart Wrap textile application earned the mattress cover manufacturer the prestigious Intelligent Material and Design award in the highest “best of the best” category.

Smart Wrap is a ready-made mattress cover with built-in sensors which monitors breathing. If no breathing is recorded from an adult or baby for longer than seven seconds, an alarm signal is sent to a pre-defined mobile phone number. Smart Wrap is a fine example of Bekaert Textiles' continuing investment in Sleep Science, research into optimisation of sleep and comfort during sleep.

For the development of Smart Wrap, Bekaert Textiles Sleep Academy, the company's own competence centre that carries out scientific research on sleep in collaboration with universities and various technology partners – worked with Dutch-based Lightspeed Systems, a company that specialises in the development and supply of intelligent high-tech sensors that use light measurement and optical detection. Lightspeed was already active in markets like fire detection, road safety, burglary/theft alarms, lifts, escalators, etc. The intensive cooperation with Bekaert Textiles has now enabled the development of an application for the bedding industry.

Micro-spectrometry, the measuring of changes in the light spectrum, forms the basis of this innovative detection system. Light is a pure signal, which can be measured very accurately and reliably using advanced electronics. Mechanical pressure on the cable causes it to distort. These distortions change the spectral distribution of the light, altering certain values. If these new values fall outside the pre-defined detection limits, an alarm signal will be triggered.

Breath monitoring is one of the first important applications of Smart Wrap, but the technology can also be used to measure the time that a person spends in bed, to show the sleep position, and examine how soundly or restless a person sleeps, where pressure points are, ... There are countless opportunities. Bekaert Textiles and Lightspeed Systems will therefore develop tailor-made Smart Wrap applications in future, to meet the specific standards of partners in the bedding industry.

The Bekaert Textiles Group currently has three sites in Europe: in Waregem (Belgium), Turkey and the Czech Republic. In addition, BT is spreading its global footprint, with sites in the United States, Mexico, Argentina, Australia and China. Bekaert has 1,100 employees worldwide. The vision “think global, act local” is applied in all its sites.

Bekaert Textiles Group

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