By Janet Ekstract
ISTANBUL- Leave it to the Turks. The soon-to-be trend could end up being shoe sensors. The new technology, developed by the National Nanotechnology Research Center (UNAM) at Bilkent University is the first to develop flexible, fiber sensors for shoes that can identify a variety of health problems. If you’re wondering about the ‘how’ of it – the fiber cable technology generates electric current and the main sensor pads have numerous ‘smart sensors’ that are capable of monitoring body movements as well as determining potential future health issues that include a person’s gait.
The nanotechnology can also be woven into clothing and can assist in monitoring a person’s heartbeat and body temperature throughout the day. UNAM”s research is ongoing since one of their goals is to provide personalized insoles in partnership with orthopedists to resolve the problems people with flat feet have. Another use for this fiber optic technology is in early diagnosis of neurological disorders like Parkinson’s. The UNAM team is also developing a method to integrate these same sensors with smartphones so those at risk for specific diseases, can be diagnosed earlier.