Project: Physical representation of DIGItal human shape data for TAILORs, apparel developers and online retailers.

This project aims at developing a solution for the apparel industry based on a shape changing mannequin, 3D human body scanner and a software solution for using the mannequin in 3 following business models. _x000D_- The first application is a method of fitting custom tailored products with the help of a shape changing mannequin that is adjusted to the body shape of a customer. The body of a customer is measured using 3D body scanning. That opens international markets for custom tailors._x000D_- The second application is in mass produced apparel development for checking the fit of the designed apparel on a wide range of body shapes. Currently 50% of people have problems with apparel fit. _x000D_- The third application area is in the online apparel retail for visualization of item fit on specific customers. That removes customer fears, and can double the $45 billion industry. _x000D__x000D_Such a solution is beyond current state of the art as so far the body measurements have been represented only virtually. In this proposal we want to develop a physical mannequin that will be able to change its form with sufficient flexibility and precision to be able to replace human body in garment fitting. _x000D__x000D_There are existing physical adjustable mannequins but they are not computer controlled and their adjustability is very limited to only most basic measurements. Also, these mannequins mostly represent an averaged proportional and symmetrical human body. The innovation here is that we take into account that a human body is usually not proportional, symmetrical and averaged. Thus we aim at creating a mannequin that can represent more realistic body shapes. _x000D_The first technical challenge in this project lies in creating a physical design of the mannequin that allows representation of a possibly great variety of body shapes with a sufficient precision while using minimal number of components to keep the reliability high and the cost affordable. The second technical challenge is the development of control algorithms for such a mannequin with an acceptable complexity. The third technical challenge lies in creating software that ensures compatibility with most used 3D scan data protocols. The project relies largely on input from users (tailors) to identify the body dimensions relevant to custom tailoring and thus limit the number of configurations of the mannequin to only those that are relevant for tailoring, so that cost objectives can be met._x000D__x000D_The work will address the following technological bottlenecks: _x000D__x000D_• Design of the self-changing mannequin that satisfies the requirements of garment industry _x000D_• designing the hardware of the self-changing mannequin with sufficient precision in a cost efficient way; _x000D_• developing control algorithms to change the mannequin’s shape with a tolerable complexity;_x000D_• developing software for making the 3D body scan data usable as an input to control the shape changing mannequin;_x000D_• developing software for 3D scan data conversion that would allow to use the mannequin with input data from all major scanners on the market. _x000D_• developing user software which is customizable to each of the end user groups _x000D__x000D_The project consortium consists of 2 research-oriented SME-s – Massi Miliano OÜ from Estonia and Human Solutions GmbH from Germany, and one university – University of Tartu from Estonia. _x000D__x000D_Massi Miliano will be the commercializing company of the solutions. They already hold the intellectual property (patent application) that is a prerequisite for the development, and will act as a Coordinator to ensure that the outcome will meet their strategic interests. _x000D__x000D_Human Solutions is among world’s leading 3D body scan application developers and thus in the best position to undertake the data interpretation related tasks. These ensure that the mannequin will be able to use all scanner data for input (required for wide market access to tailors). Human Solutions also has a wide client base in apparel industry, proving its experience in developing practical solutions and becoming also an asset in dissemination of project results. _x000D__x000D_The University of Tartu is responsible for the development of the mannequin. It has the required interdisciplinary competences in robotics and control. As co-inventors of the patent-pending DIGITAILOR mannequin design concept and performers of the preceding development work on the shape-shifting mannequin, they have the longest relevant experience. _x000D__x000D_The consortium members have thus competence in 3D body scanning and modeling. Also, we have developed a preliminary proof-of-concept prototype of a shape changing male mannequin and in cooperation with garment industry and tailors. We therefore have understanding about the requirements, complexity and technical solutions of the possible technical problems. The aim of this project is to develop the technology further, to integrate the mannequin to 3D body scanning technique and to user interfaces and create 3 competitive business models based on this technology. _x000D_

Acronym DIGITAILOR (Reference Number: 4354)
Duration 01/06/2008 - 30/09/2010
Project Topic This project develops a shape changing physical mannequin compatible with 3D human body scanners and necessary user interfaces. It helps custom tailors to sell internationally, apparel developers to design clothes fitting a wider audience, and online retailers to visualize item fit and grow market.
Project Results
(after finalisation)
The project resulted in a demonstrator system that includes both male and female physical mannequins capable of changing shape in sizes S-XXXL with sufficient precision to be usable in fittings of custom tailored clothes, design of mass-produced clothes and online visualization of garment fit. The system can use raw data from different 3D body scanners as an input. The system effectiveness is tested in real usage situations.
Network Eurostars
Call Eurostars Cut-Off 1

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
3 Massi Miliano OÜ Coordinator Estonia
3 Human Solutions GmbH Partner Germany
3 University of Tartu, Institute of Technology Partner Estonia