By Kuah Guan Oo
Pix by Saliman Leman
BANGI, 21 March 2011 – Traffic control personnel including policemen and other enforcement officers and road builders currently run the risk of being mauled down by vehicles especially when operating in poor lighting conditions.
Many road users including pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists also faced the same risk especially when visibility is poor.
To overcome the problem, a Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) lecturer has come out with a solar powered vest complete with LED lights that is highly visible compared to the conventional apparel with reflectors.
Called “ecSighting”, the stylish vest is the work of Dr Azimin S.M.Tazilan, an architect who is a senior lecturer and research fellow at the Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment of UKM.
He hit upon the idea of the solar vest in his quest to apply green technology in our daily lives, after seeing that the vests or jackets with reflectors worn by traffic policemen and other enforcement officers do not work well in poor lighting conditions.
The normal vests or jackets with reflectors worn by policemen, local government workers and motorcyclists need good lighting condition for the reflectors to work. But on a dark night when there is no lights, they are hardly visible and can pose problems for them.
Dr Azimin then crafted a vest with built-in durable solar mosaic to tap solar energy which is stored in a battery kept in the pocket of the apparel. Concealed wirings connect the well-placed LED lights on the front and back of the vest to the battery, which can last up to eight hours of continuous operation.
Additional features are built-in light sensors to detect lighting condition; a poor light condition will automatically light up the LED lightings, while a bright environment will automatically shut down the system.
For those who want to go fishing, hiking or camping in the jungle, there is an additional piece of LED lighting for them to plug into the vest that will act as a torchlight or a table lamp to see in the dark while leaving their hands free to bait their hooks or to read in their tents.
The normal LCD bulbs can come in any colours and they can be replaced easily.
The vest can be made of cotton or any waterproof materials. The ones that were presented by UKM to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and his wife, Datin Paduka Seri Rosmah Mansor, are water-resistant and only need dry-cleaning.
Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation Datuk Seri Maximus Ongkili was the first to be presented with the vest and his is a waterproof jacket for fishing.
Dr Azimin Tazilan can be contacted at:
Or Tel: 603 8921 6595