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The pollution-fighting bikini

posted 21 December 2015 at 17:25:34


                   
A 3D printed sponge bikini, designed to absorb pollutants from the ocean as the wearer swims around in the sea, has won first prize in the Reshape15: Wearable Technology Competition.

The bikini is made from a sponge insert and has a 3D printed frame made from flexible plastic. The sponge insert can be reused up to 20 times without losing its absorbency, trapping the contaminants in the pores of the material, so that they don’t come into contact with the wearer’s skin.

The Sponge material was created to clean up oil and chemical spills and to desalinate water. It is a water-repelling and highly porous carbon material that is light and flexible. It absorbs everything except water and can absorb up to 25 times its own weight.

The bikini weighs just 54 grams (1.9oz), with a surface area of 250 square centimetres (38.75 square inches), and a thickness of 2mm. It was designed by architecture and design firm Eray Carbajo, based in New York and Istanbul, in collaboration with UC Riverside electrical engineering professor Mihri Ozkan.

 Image: © Eray Carbajo