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Surprising Science

This Baby Bootie Provides A Constant Stream Of Data

Developed by a team of Brigham Young students, the Owlet sends vitals — including heart rate, temperature, and most notably, an alert in case the baby rolls over on their stomach — to a smartphone app.

What’s the Latest Development?

A team of Brigham Young students won the Student Innovator of the Year competition by developing a health monitor designed to be worn on a baby’s foot. The Owlet “smart sock” contains sensors that measure vital data, such as heart rate, oxygen intake, and temperature, and send it to a smartphone app. Made from silicon and a stretchable fabric, the device also adjusts to fit as the baby grows. Two hundred hours’ worth of tests have proven successful, and thanks to a crowdfunding effort, the team has raised more than $45,000 to help them bring it to market.

What’s the Big Idea?

Of all the different reasons for wearable technology that exist, improving potentially life-saving communication between babies and the rest of us may be one of the best. One important feature of the Owlet, an alert that goes off if the baby has rolled over onto his or her stomach, could help eliminate Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), according to the team. In addition, the data collected by the device could provide valuable insights into other possible health issues, says team member Jordan Monroe: “Maybe there are markers that could predict lung issues, heart disease, or autism.”

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Read it at FastCompany/Co.Exist


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