This colour-reflecting survival jacket is made of 2 billion glass spheres
Vollebak, a brand known for its innovative approach to clothing, has crafted a futuristic survival jacket that’s inspired by the adaptive camouflage of the black squid. The squid’s skin is incredibly adapted and able to make itself highly visible by creating optical illusions in just fractions of a second. It can also camouflage itself to match its surroundings.
By laser embedding more than 2 billion microscopic glass spheres into resin on the jacket’s surface, Vollebak was able to mimic this effect. The Black Squid survival jacket appears dull metallic black in low-light conditions but reflects all visible colours when exposed to bright light.
“The Black Squid Jacket focuses on replicating the elements of squid skin that make it hyper-visible. While the squid uses microscopic plate-like structures on the surface of its skin to change colour, our jacket uses disruptively-structured microscopic glass spheres,” explained one of the Vollebak founders, Steve Tidball.
With over 40,000 microscopic glass spheres in every square centimetre, they’re invisible to the naked eye. When the survival jacket is exposed to light, it travels through the curved surface of these black glass spheres and strikes the back of them before being reflected back at the original light source. That light scatters away from it simultaneously so that the fabric looks like it’s emitting light.
It’s fully waterproof and windproof. Since the survival jacket is designed mostly for those that are doing outside sports, its front zipper and pockets are also waterproof. It also has a super high collar, crafted to “ride comfortably up and over your face to meet your goggles.” Therefore, expect to pay a steep price of US$995 for the Black Squid Jacket. However, for a product that’s as innovative as this, I suppose that’s fair. And if you want to regulate your temperature better when you’re out and about, check out this personal air conditioner by Sony.