BeBop Sensors, a company created by musical instrument inventor Keith McMillen and KMI, unveiled it first product, the BeBop Wearable Smart Fabric Sensor, dubbed as the first ultra-thin wearable smart fabric sensor that measures all aspects of physicality, including bend, location, motion, rotation, angle, and torque. Employing BeBop’s patented Monolithic Fabric Sensor Technology, BeBop fabric sensors continuously provide real-time reporting on force, x/y location, bend, twist, size, stretch and motion for markets, including clothing and protective wear, shoes, healthcare devices, athletic equipment, automotive, robotics, aerospace, gaming, biometrics, prosthetics, recycling monitors and appliance markets, says the company.
Unlike other wearable sensors on the market today that only measure physiology (EKG, EMG), electrical conductivity or breathing, BeBop measures actual physicality to sense and display 3D maps of data. Fundamental, tested, and extensible with over a million sensors already in daily use through KMI’s musical instrument products, BeBop’s Monolithic Fabric Sensors integrate sensors, traces, and electronics into a single piece of fabric to provide greater sensitivity, resolution, range of deployment, and robustness, all with a tiny size, says company sources.
BeBop sensor technology was created after six years of developing smart fabric sensors for more expressive musical instruments, such as KMI’s QuNexus and QuNeo keyboards.After being approached by numerous companies requesting KMI’s fabric sensor technology, KMI launched spin-off company BeBop Sensors to fulfill the demand.
BeBop’s variety of solutions available now for integration into new wearable products:
1mm Thin Shoe Insoles: measures gait, pressure, contact style, fit, and flexure of toes and feet.
Planar, spherical or cylindrical geometries: used as pressure maps, head sensors or handles of athletic equipment.
Smart Yoga and Gym Mats: show hand and foot pressure for teaching.
Grip Sensors: detail finger positions for baseball, golf, etc.
Car Seat Sensors: senses airbag fill volume and passenger weight.
Car Steering Wheels: sense driver alertness.
Weight Lifting Gloves: indicate weight and even load.
Foot Volume Sensing: anticipate Diabetic events.
Cycling Shoe Inserts: power meters.
BeBop is now offering custom turnkey sensor solutions for OEMs to incorporate into their products, ranging from basic sensors to complete wireless solutions with advanced power management. Visualization programs for any design with an easily-modified software developer’s kit (SDK) allows manufacturers to create custom apps by choosing from a variety of 2D and 3D representations and colors or by driving the BeBop data into whole new applications.