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New technology- Personal Climate Control | Manufacture News | News

If you like your jacket half unzipped, you’re going to love this

For many, the difference between a great ride and just a good one is body temperature. With most riders having one summer-weight jacket and one other for winter riding, we often find ourselves in the in-between days where one’s too hot or the other not warm enough. And it’s in these situations when both your enjoyment and concentration levels can be drastically effected — especially over long periods of time. While there’s the odd, gloriously eccentric few who have bolted an in-window air conditioner onto the rear rack of their motorcycle, there’s now a far more discreet (and I suspect, more efficient) solution to adjusting your body temperature while on the bike.

Personal Climate Control

All the way from Phoenix, Arizona, a small, wearable air conditioner called MiClimate is currently under the last stages of development. It works by drawing in ambient air and either heating or cooling it before blowing it up under your clothing through a belt-type delivery system. It’s currently being marketed on the crowd-funding website Indiegogo where the developers have already reached US$30,300 of their US$20,000 goal and pledges to secure one start at US$249 (AUD$342). Here’s how it works.

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The core unit

Attached to the air-distribution belt and worn on the side of the rider’s hip is what the company is calling the core unit. It has an intake at the base where it draws in ambient air and then, using MiClimate’s patented and rather secret thermo-electric technology, has the ability to either reduce the ambient air temperature by 10°C or increase it by up to 20°C. It’s powered by either an optional external battery or by hard-wiring it directly to the bike’s battery and it’s rubber coated for durability.

The company has even included a USB port so you can charge other devices on the go.

The Airbelt

Where the magic happens. Once conditioned, the cool or warm air is distributed around the rider’s body through the manifold connecting it to the core unit and into the air belt. Cleverly, the internal vents which direct the air are flexible which ensures efficient air distribution for all shaped riders. It’s fully adjustable to cater to a wide range of users, it’s fabric covered to increase comfort against the skin and its low-profile design should mean it will work on even your tight-fitting leather apparel.

Control

If you are lucky enough to be regularly switching between bikes, MiClimate gives you a couple of options. In terms of control, it can be operated using either the buttons on the device’s core unit itself or, if you’re sticking to the one bike all winter, via the supplied handlebar-mounted bluetooth remote. Similarly, if you’re not interested in hard-wiring the unit to one bike, the optional external lithium-ion battery is said to be good for four hours of heating or cooling — less, if you’re also powering something through the additional USB port.

How much?

Right now, a US$249 (AUD$342) pledge will secure you a MiClimate base kit which includes the air belt and the core unit. There’s 10 different pledge perks which peaks at a US$2500 (AUD$3437) pledge for 10 fully-equipped MiClimate kits. For more information on where the project’s up to, head to www.indiegogo.com.

By Kel Buckley

Bikers driving a motorcycle rides along the asphalt road (blurred motion). First-person view. Focus on the dashboard of a motorcycle

Bikers driving a motorcycle rides along the asphalt road (blurred motion). First-person view. Focus on the dashboard of a motorcycle