NASA-funded spacesuit tech could provide hot flash relief for menopausal women

NASA-funded spacesuit featuring climate control could help menopausal women by providing hot flash relief

  • The material that was intended for astronaut gloves is used in clothing that can provide relief from hot flashes
  • Textile maker Louise Nicholson was looking for a way to provide comfort to menopausal women and her research led to NASA-backed technology.
  • About 1.3 million people enter menopause each year and the condition can persist for several years and sometimes cause “debilitating” symptoms.
  • Nicholson’s company, Fifty One Apparel, sells tops, bottoms, accessories, and other items that contain temperature stabilization technology.

NASA-funded space technology may help menopausal women who are bothered by hot flashes.

The materials that were originally intended for outer space glove wear are now being used by a company aiming to help those suffering from the bouts of sweating and overheating that are common at the end of the menstrual cycle.

The space agency estimates that about 1.3 million people enter menopause each year, and the condition can last for several years and sometimes cause ‘debilitating’ symptoms.

Textile maker Louise Nicholson was looking for a way to provide relief to anyone with these symptoms, but found that most options were lacking until she found a material made possible by NASA funding.

NASA-funded space technology may help menopausal women who are bothered by hot flashes. These materials can maintain a constant temperature as they change from solid to liquid or vice versa

“I did some initial research to see what was on the market, and there was absolutely nothing other than pajamas,” Nicholson, who founded London-based Fifty One Clothing, said in a statement.

In the midst of my searches, I came across a technology called Outlast.

NASA’s Johnson Space Center was looking to improve insulation in spacesuit gloves in the 1980s and struck a contract with Triangle Research and Development Corporation to investigate the use of so-called phase-change materials.

These materials can maintain a constant temperature as they change from solid to liquid or vice versa.

Materials that were originally intended to be worn in outer space are now being used by a company that aims to help those suffering from the bouts of sweating and overheating that are common at the end of the menstrual cycle.

Materials that were originally intended to be worn in outer space are now being used by a company that aims to help those suffering from the bouts of sweating and overheating that are common at the end of the menstrual cycle.

Triangle was able to embed phase-changing materials into microcapsules that could then be used as a fabric insert for the spacesuit glove.

Louise Nicholson (above), founder of London-based Fifty One Apparel, said in a statement:

“I did some preliminary research to see what was on the market,” Louise Nicholson (above), who founded London-based Fifty One Apparel, said in a statement.

The gloves have never reached outer space, but another company known as Outlast Technologies patented the material and marketed it under the name Outlast.

By bonding Outlast to cellulosic threads, Fifty One Apparel maintains the temperature-regulating properties of phase-changing materials but preserves the look and feel of fine fabrics.

Initial products included a range of four-pattern T-shirts sold to consumers in the London area at events – and now the company has jumped into e-commerce selling T-shirts, pants and pajamas.

The company — named after the age at which most women begin experiencing menopausal symptoms — has expanded its range of products with Outlast technology, including accessories like scarves, face masks and turbans.

As of 2021, the US is the second largest market for Fifty One after the UK, and the company is looking to acquire a local distributor for the product.

By bonding Outlast to cellulosic threads, Fifty One Apparel maintains the temperature-regulating properties of phase-changing materials but preserves the look and feel of fine fabrics.

By bonding Outlast to cellulosic threads, Fifty One Apparel maintains the temperature-regulating properties of phase-changing materials but preserves the look and feel of fine fabrics.

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