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  • I'm in Toronto, Canada.

  • And Toronto is cold for a lot of the year.

  • Good winter boots are a necessity.

  • They've got to be warm, they've got to be waterproof,

  • but also, they've got to stop you going arse over apex

  • when you suddenly walk on a patch of ice.

  • This is WinterLab...!

  • and it's part of the Challenging Environment Assessment Laboratories

  • at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute.

  • And this is their tilting, frozen floor.

  • - If you want to find out whether people are at risk,

  • at risk of falling, at risk of a road accident,

  • at risk of something, you need to put them in a challenging environment

  • and see how they respond.

  • What we have is four modules for different things.

  • We have the world's most realistic driving simulator now.

  • When it rains in our simulator, it actually rains.

  • We also have StairLab, where we have people walk up and down stairs,

  • and we suddenly and unexpectedly move the room

  • and they have to grab the handrails

  • and we can see how effective the handrails are, or the stair design.

  • 21,000 people in Ontario every winter, on average, end up in

  • our emergency rooms because they fall on the ice and snow.

  • So the purpose of WinterLab is so that we can do two things.

  • One is that we can test the boots, and inform consumers what they should buy

  • and the other is we can help companies and ourselves develop better boots.

  • - I know I'm harnessed in, but that is terrifying!

  • - It's an icebox really, it's insulated.

  • We can generate winds, we can actually make nice, white, fluffy snow,

  • we can control the air temperature very precisely

  • and we can control the temperature of the ice very precisely.

  • We actually have a group of... graduate students(!)

  • like every other university lab you've ever been to,

  • because they're not very expensive and they're sort of disposable(!)

  • who do this testing and because we want some uniformity.

  • - It's a good harness, very good harness.

  • - Now, in order to test the performance of shoes,

  • we choose to put WinterLab on top of a platform that we can gradually tip.

  • - It does feel ever so slightly like gravity is shifting.

  • - We tip it as you walk up and down until the moment that you slip.

  • We have an angle which we think is just acceptable.

  • It's seven degrees.

  • We actually take the minimum value of several people

  • if you can make seven degrees up and down comfortably,

  • we give you one snowflake.

  • - This is the good shoes, I can just, oh, okay, yeah.

  • No, I can literally just walk normally.

  • - At the moment, we've got a scale of three snowflakes

  • and that was because the first time we ever did this,

  • 90 out of 100 boots failed to get one snowflake

  • and nothing got better than one snowflake

  • so to publish it as a five-snowflake scale looked a bit depressing.

  • We've already tested some prototypes for next year

  • and they're getting two and three snowflakes.

  • - That's fine, I put my foot down and it just stays where it is.

  • - We are really quite confident that eventually

  • we're going to be able to add some more snowflakes at the four and five level.

  • It raises another interesting point, and that is:

  • can you have too much friction?

  • We're a long way off that yet, but of course, more than half

  • the falls that you experience are people tripping up.

  • We will eventually decide whether a five-snowflake shoe is a good idea or not.

  • I'm really happy, in two years we've done two things.

  • One is that we've changed the buying habits of people

  • and the other is now the industry is improving the quality of boots

  • and we're helping them do that.

  • - Thank you very much to all the team at WinterLab

  • here at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute.

  • Pull down the links in the description

  • for more about them and their research.

  • I swear I'm not deliberately trying to do that.

  • Yep!

I'm in Toronto, Canada.


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B1 中級

転倒するまで凍った床を傾ける。ウィンターラボ (Tilting an Icy Floor Until You Fall Over: WinterLab)

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    林宜悉 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日