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Space-age dress shirts smarter than sweat stains

6:58 AM, Jul 11, 2012   |    comments
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(CBS News) Sweat stains: the bane of the white-collar working man. Any male office worker knows that summertime is a bad time for dress shirts. Even the lightest, most sun-friendly shirt will inevitably get sweaty over the course of a hot day. But a group of Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduates are hoping to change all that with a high-tech dress shirt made of space age material.

Gihan Amarasiriwardena, Aman Advani, Kit Kichey, and Kevin Rustagi - collectively known as the Ministry of Supply - have a history working in futuristic fashion. The MIT grads all worked on designing space suits for astronauts at school. From there, it was an unusual leap from the world of outer space science to New York City fashion.

The Ministry of Supply shirts are called Apollo shirts. On their company's Kickstarter page, they explain the science behind the fashion: "Your temperature rises and falls many times throughout the day.  Using the same technology that NASA uses in space suits, our proprietary blend of fibers, "Apollo" will literally control your body temperature. Imagine you're outside on a hot day. Apollo uses Phase-change Materials (PCMs) to pull heat away from your body and actually store it in the shirt - like a battery. This way, when you get back into your AC'ed office, the shirt will release the heat back to you and keep your skin at the temperature it should be at. The difference is noticeable, and can change your day. Ministry of Supply is literally bringing this technology down from space."

At time of writing, nearly 2,400 backers have contributed $361,269 on the crowd-sourced funding site Kickstarter. The Ministry of Supply hopes to release their Apollo shirts later this summer.

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