03 October 2018
With innovation at the heart of everything we do, we are delighted that our Hyperkewl Plus range of cooling products has been recognised by CBRE as one of their Top Ten Great Ideas in 2018. Having navigated through the ‘Dragon Den’ styled regional heats our team lead by James Russell will now join other finalists on October 4th to discover who the overall innovator of the year is.
The opportunity to develop Hyperkewl Plus into a range of PPE (personal protective equipment) products followed each aimed at reducing the risk of heat stress for construction operatives across the globe. With extreme heatwaves happening with ever increasing frequency the business today now exports worldwide and has established itself as a leading authority on the issue of heat stress and worker wellbeing.
When applied into cooling workwear, HyperKewl Plus is activated by placing the garment in water for 2 minutes, removing the excess water and wearing. The users stay totally dry however thanks to a waterproof lining on the inside of the garment. With evaporation the garment will cool down by 15˚C and the user will see a thermal skin temperature reduction by up to 8˚C.
Key facts about Hyperkewl Plus
CBRE Great Ideas Innovation Video
29 August 2018
The Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) has delivered thousands of state-of-the-art cooling vests to workers building stadiums for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
The cooling vests, which have been designed by UK-based apparel experts TechNiche, reduce a wearer’s body temperature by up to 15°C. Testing and development over the past year have shown the vests improve a wearer’s comfort, concentration and the ability to work efficiently during hot conditions, SC said in its website yesterday.
“The cooling vest has the potential to transform the lives of our workers. We have spent two years exploring how best to utilise various cooling products, but many are simply not suitable for Qatar’s environment. We want our workers to really benefit from the concept of this technology and, after putting the TechNiche products through rigorous testing, they delivered impressive results,” said Mahmoud Qutub, Executive Director of the SC’s Workers’ Welfare Department.
This is not the first time the SC and TechNiche have teamed up. The two organisations are currently collaborating to develop a revolutionary ‘air-cool suit’ – something which will use the same technology as the apparel worn by Formula 1 drivers during races.
The suit will be the first product of its kind to be developed specifically for construction workers.
Qutub added: “The air-cool suit contains exciting technology that demonstrates the innovation goals at the heart of the first World Cup in the Arab world. It has the potential to leave a global legacy for workers operating in countries with similar climactic conditions to Qatar.”
James Russell, Managing Director of Techniche UK, said: “This is a significant moment for the technology, the SC and Qatar. This specially developed product is the most advanced of its kind in the world and provides significant health and welfare benefits to wearers.”
Russell added: “As a global business we are proud to support Qatar’s genuine desire to transform the way in which worker welfare is conducted, particularly around heat-related issues.”
As a result of their work developing the cooling vests, Qatar Innovation Community recently invited TechNiche to become the first non-Qatari private sector company to join its community and help drive innovation solutions related to the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
https://www.iloveqatar.net/news/general/thousands-of-stadium-workers-get-cooling-vests https://www.marketscreener.com/TECHNICHE-LIMITED-10354116/news/Techniche-Cooling-vests-rolled-out-across-Qatar-World-Cup-stadium-construction-sites-27177898/ http://qatar-tribune.com/news-details/id/137096
23 July 2018
Fans are great, but when it gets really hot all they do is push warm air around. These seven gadgets aim to cool you down without air conditioning
The British summer is a cruel mistress. It’s either dank, grey and raining, or so hot you practically melt on the way to work. An umbrella takes care of the former, but it’s difficult to stay cool in the heat.
When a fan just doesn’t cut it, or simply isn’t practical, here are some of the best gadgets to keep the sweat at bay during work, rest and play.
Techniche evaporative cooling vests and jackets
Evaporative cooling isn’t limited to a desktop fan, but can also be incredibly effective built into clothing. Using nothing more than the power of water, the Techniche Kewlshirt keeps you cool even in the hottest of days.
It works as you might expect. Soak the vest in water and the special fabric acts like a sponge. The inside of the vest is waterproof to keep you dry, while air passing over the jacket causes the water to slowly evaporate cooling the surface of the jacket and you within it.
It’s really quite effective. But you don’t have to take my word for it – the company supplies cooling vests to some of the top F1 drivers for use in hot climates. It needs some airflow to really work, which means it’s not quite as effective on a stuffy train, but it’s still cooler than not wearing one.
While it’s brilliant for running, there are a few downsides if you were strap one on for your commute. You look a little foolish in what’s essentially a tank top, and the water-filled patches on the outside of the jacket will soak anything that comes into contact with them, which means you can’t wear a bag or touch anything on your chest or back, although it still works fine with a sports jersey over the top of it.
On the hottest commutes, though, I think it’s probably worth wearing to not be a sweaty mess, and there are a variety of different vests and jackets by Techniche using the same system, including ones designed for cycling and general purpose jackets.
Verdict: stay cool under the pressure of exercise, but difficult to pull off for anything else
Techniche evaporative cooling wrist wraps
If you don’t think you could pull off a full evaporative jacket, or it’s simply not practical, the next best thing is a set of cooling wrist wraps.
They look like big sweat bands, but are made of the same material as the evaporative jacket. Soak them in water for two minutes, squeeze out the excess and strap them on. They cool your wrists and therefore the blood pumping through them, creating something akin to an internal cooling system.
With enough airflow they’re downright chilly sitting there on your wrists and are better than nothing, even on a packed London tube train. The brilliant little things were cooling enough to stop me sweating profusely walking home in 30C heat, but they have similar downsides to the jacket: anything that touches them instantly gets wet, but after one trip and a wet trouser leg I soon learned to not soak things.
They’ll last about three hours on the hottest of days between water top-ups, but take forever to fully dry, so you’ll need somewhere to store or hang them up when you get wherever you’re going.
Verdict: gets you through the hottest commutes and handy for runs
Techniche Cool Towel Pro
If you’re looking for something to cool you during a workout or activity, there’s also an evaporative towel, which works slightly differently.
Stiff as cardboard when dry, the towel soaks up water and then displaces it onto your skin as you towel down. That way your skin has a fresh layer of cool water that evaporates and cools you down. It’s not as practical as a vest or wrist bands, but is ideal for cooling off quickly mid-workout.
Verdict: Good for workouts, not much more than that
22 July 2018
The Qatar Innovation Community (QIC) has invited the first non-Qatari private sector company to join its community and help drive innovation related to the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar™.
TechNiche UK will become part of the QIC following their work with the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) to develop groundbreaking wearable cooled technology for workers building the stadiums directly related to the 2022 FWC™.
Established in March 2017 by the SC, the Ministry of Transport and Communications (MoTC), Qatar Science & Technology Park (QSTP) and Ooredoo, the QIC brought together a broad range of national stakeholders to accelerate innovation across Qatar, benefitting the 2022 FWC™ and beyond.
Through various innovation programmes, the QIC supports Qatar’s knowledge capital, addressing national priorities and enhancing the country’s image and global competitiveness.
To date, QIC’s 19 stakeholders have all been Qatar-based, however, Techniche were invited to join because of their collaboration with the SC and existing knowledge of the construction industry, contributing to Qatar’s innovation ecosystem by utilising their research and development capabilities while working closely with local partners.
TechNiche engaged with the SC in late 2017 to test a range of cooled wearable technology designed to keep workers comfortable during Qatar’s hotter summer months. Both pilot programmes on Lusail Stadium – which will host the opening ceremony and Final of the 2022 FWC™ – led to the development of bespoke cooling products which will be introduced across SC projects in the coming weeks.
James Russell, Managing Director EMEA for TechNiche, said: “To be the first international and private sector company to join such a prestigious group of companies is a great honour for our company. We’re excited to work across the group with a number of legacy projects and innovations.
“We understand the responsibility of being invited to join the QIC. The country’s commitment to deliver a successful World Cup, using research, development and innovation to leave a true legacy is something we are extremely proud of. This invitation is an historic opportunity to develop pioneering technology capable of benefitting the wider region.”
A spokesperson for QIC said: “TechNiche received this invitation following their pioneering work in relation to workers’ welfare. Their commitment in this area is extremely impressive, as is their track record of using innovation to make a global impact. We welcome their expertise to the community and look forward to collaborating on future projects.”
For more information about QIC visit https://www.ooredoo.qa/portal/OoredooQatar/qic
For more information on TechNiche please visit https://www.techniche-europe.com/.
For more information on the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy’s commitment to workers’ welfare, please visit https://www.sc.qa/en/opportunities/workers-welfare.
06 June 2018
As it becomes increasingly apparent that global warming is on the increase, growing numbers of companies, industries and governments are paying more serious attention to the problem of heat stress. HSM asks James Russell, managing director at Techniche Europe what measures can be taken to address this?
Heat stress is by no means only a problem of the future; it is a problem that health and safety professionals throughout the world already face today. Workplaces in the United States and Australia have been quickest to act, but we’re increasingly seeing companies in Europe taking steps to reduce the risk of heat stress among their staff.
So what is heat stress and why is it a problem? Heat stress occurs when the body stops being able to control its internal temperature. Under normal circumstances our bodies do this quite effectively – increasing blood flow to the skin’s surface and producing sweat, which evaporates from the skin’s surface and helps heat to escape.
However, if the body’s attempts to do this are hampered – as in environments where heat exposure is unavoidable or where protective equipment stops sweat from evaporating – then heat stress can be the result, putting the body under strain and resulting in heat-related illness. Symptoms of heat stress differ according to severity, but can include impaired concentration, fatigue, muscle cramps, heat rashes, severe thirst, dizziness, nausea, headaches, heavy sweating and clammy skin. The severest form of heat-related illness – heat stroke – can lead to confusion, convulsions, loss of consciousness and even death.
Naturally, some workplaces, such as those where the process itself produces heat, are at greater risk than others. However, the risk of heat stress in outdoor work environments such as those in agriculture and construction is definitely worsening as the world gets hotter.
In these types of workplaces, exposure to direct sun with no shade can substantially increase how hot the body gets. Higher air temperatures and humidity levels, as well as low air movement or strong winds with hot, dry air can also exacerbate heat problems. Sunlight reflecting off water, the ground and artificial surfaces can produce radiant heat, further compounding the problem. When combined with low fluid consumption, physical exertion or the use of bulky protective clothing and equipment, working in hot conditions outdoors can become extremely hazardous.
The good news is that when temperatures rise, there are a number of steps that employers can take to protect employees from heat stress.
Education: Provide training for workers and their managers to make them aware of the heat stress risks associated with their work, symptoms to look out for and how to respond, as well as the importance of staying hydrated and taking rest periods in shaded or cooler areas Preventing dehydration: Provide cool water in the workplace and encourage workers to drink small amounts frequently before, during and after working Providing shade: In hot weather, shaded areas can have a much cooler ambient temperature than those in direct sun, allowing the body to get rid of heat more easily. Provide shaded rest areas and, if possible, consider moving work into shaded areas Providing protective clothing: Light coloured clothing reflects the heat and wide-brimmed hats provide sun protection, but specialised cooling clothing can actually help the body to keep cool, particularly when protective equipment has to be worn. For example, the Techniche HyperKewl™ crown cooler and neck shade attaches to the inside of a hard hat and uses evaporative technology to keep the wearer’s head and neck cool – between 6°C and 12°C cooler than the ambient temperature – for several hours while also protecting them from the sun Allowing workers to acclimatise: Gradually increasing workloads and exposure while taking frequent breaks for water and to rest in a shady or cool area can enable the body to build up some tolerance to working in the heat. Allow new workers and those returning from absence to acclimatise to reduce their heat stress risk. In addition, during a heat wave, even experienced workers may need to acclimatise to the higher temperature Scheduling work to reduce sun exposure: Schedule the hardest physical tasks for the coolest parts of the day, rotate workers to reduce their heat exposure and move work away from direct sun or radiant heat sources.
25 May 2018
DANNY BUCHAN STAYS COOL UNDER PRESSURE
Cooling apparel specialist TechNiche Europe, is thrilled to announce a partnership with 2 x British Superbike Superstock Champion, Danny Buchan for the next seasons.
TechNiche is working with Danny to ensure that he’s performing at his best on and off the track [by using the latest cooling technology that is proven to enhance endurance, concentration and hydration. Danny is in good company as TechNiche’s patented technology is already used by a range of professional sports including F1 and Rugby.
TechNiche will be keeping Danny cool under pressure throughout the season and look forward to seeing the results. Danny Buchan commented “TechNiche are known to be the best in the world for their cooling apparel technology, together we’ll be aiming for the no.1 spot this season”.
James Russell, Managing Director of TechNiche EMEA added “Danny is a legend in the sport, working with him showcases how our world class technology is not only supported by the best but it’s also known by the professional to be so”
For more information about TechNiche and the partnership with Danny Buchan please email firstname.lastname@example.org
02 January 2018
Innovative cooling technology has been hailed a success by workers constructing the stadium which will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup™ final.
Evaporative cooling vests, wrist-wraps, cooled towels and neck covers were recently tested by 150 workers at the Lusail Stadium project site. Made from state-of-the-art evaporative and phase change materials, the technology cooled the body temperatures of workers by up to 10°C.
Every worker who took part in the recent pilot described the technology as beneficial, while more than three-quarters said the cooling effect was ‘very good’.
A Lusail Stadium construction worker wearing SC’s innovative cooling apparel Leveraging the influence of the Qatar Innovation Community – a group of key stakeholders accelerating innovation and socioeconomic development in Qatar – the SC identified Techniche as a suitable partner to conduct a pilot offering immediate solutions for workers. The pilot was conducted by US-based Techniche, in collaboration with the SC, and HBK Contracting, Lusail Stadium’s main contractor.
Following the success of the pilot, the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) will now assess the results of the report before exploring ways to utilise the technology which will benefit workers in the short, medium and long-term.
Temperatures on-site reached 40°C during the pilot. Workers tested the technology for a full day, during which they were regularly monitored. Thermal images were taken throughout the test to measure the body temperature of the workers and measure the effectiveness of the technology.
HBK Contracting’s Rashid Marera, who currently works as a flag man on the project, gave positive feedback about the technology.
Marera, a 23-year-old from Kenya, said: “The vests are very good. The jacket cools the body – there’s not much sweating when we wear these. I think we would like to have these all the time – especially during summer.
Kalyan Viswanathan, HBK Contracting’s Workers’ Welfare Manager, said the workers welcomed the trial.
“The initial response was positive – the workers like the comfort,” said Viswanathan. “It enables them to work better and increases productivity.
Techniche’s products are used in various industries, including sport, military, medicine and construction. The company is now hoping to roll out its products on a wider basis in Qatar and support the country’s commitment to workers’ welfare.
James Russell, Managing Director of Techniche, said: “This was a really important day for us. It gave us a foundation to test our technologies and let us understand how we can fight heat stress in these conditions.”
Russell went on to explain how the technology keeps a worker cool.
He continued: “The vests are made from an evaporative fabric called HyperKewl, which is a super-absorbent polymer fibre which you place directly into water to activate. It reduces a worker’s body temperature and lasts for around ten hours.
“This technology is at the forefront of the industry. Going forward, there will be research and development into how we take this technology forward, to enable the SC and Qatar to become leaders in heat stress management and workers’ welfare.”
Construction workers at Lusail Stadium try out SC’s cooling apparel Mahmoud Qutub, Senior Advisor Special Projects Office and Executive Director of Workers’ Welfare, said: “The benefit of this pilot has been very clear to see. The metrics captured by Techniche demonstrated in real time the positive impact on both the mental and physical state of workers.
“Our aim is to find solutions right now using existing technology, however there is an opportunity to develop a product that leaves a legacy for workers not only in Qatar but in any country with a similar climate. That is something we are already exploring.”
The Techniche pilot is one of many uses of cooling products by the SC in 2017. Earlier this year the WWD deployed 10,000 cooled towels across all projects in parallel with a separate cooled vest trial on Al Wakrah Stadium.
A Lusail Stadium construction worker wearing SC’s innovative cooling apparel In addition, the SC also developed an innovative cooled helmet capable of reducing temperatures by up to 10°C. Following an extensive research and development phase, these helmets are expected to be rolled out next summer.
The use of cooled products on SC sites complements a host of initiatives that have been introduced across SC projects designed to enhance the living and working conditions of workers, including a health and nutrition programme with Weill-Cornell Medicine-Qatar, an extensive training and up-skilling programme with Qatar International Safety Centre, a dedicated grievance hotline, and a wide-spread programme of health checks and assessment of emergency medical facilities across all sites.