Klymit NobleTek Gas Insulation
Cold-weather apparel made with Klymit NobleTek is simultaneously ultralight and hyper-efficient, thanks to chambers that keep the body warm in the same way double-paned windows insulate a building. A layer of argon has the same thermal conductivity as a layer of down or synthetic fiber insulation three times as thick, and unlike those materials, it's unaffected by wetness or compression. The wearer can adjust the warmth level on the go by connecting a thumb-sized argon canister to a valve in the pocket, filling the 15-millimeter chambers for more heat or releasing the gas to cool down. And because argon is nearly weightless, Klymit's 10.5-ounce Double Diamond four-way stretch vest boasts the highest warmth-to-weight ratio on the market, keeping you both warm and mobile on the slopes.
From $200; klymit.com
This is an incredible technology! I had the good fortune to test out the NobleTek insulation technology firsthand in a sub-zero environment, and it works exactly as described.
The Kinetic Vests look great, fit great, and the insulation technology is light years ahead of anything currently on the market.
Why does it have to use argon? I assume argon is less conductive than other gases. Do they offer an option to use a cheaper gas or an air pump in case the maximum performance is not needed or the argon canisters are depleted?
You are absolutely right, Argon is used as the insulating medium in the vest as it has a very low thermal conduction. In fact, 4.5mm of Argon has the same thermal conductivity as 14.5mm of natural and synthetic fiber insulation including goose down, wool, and all the top branded synthetics. Argon is about 33% better at insulating than dry air, not humid ambient air, so you would need a compressed air canister that has been filtered for that which would cost almost as much just for the manufacturing of the canister.
If you look at the comparison to other insulation options and the cost savings over time, using Argon is actually the much more economic way to stay warm i.e. on average people replace their base and or mid layers every 1 – 2 years. A standard very cheap off brand base layer is $25 minimum, but if you’re looking for quality each layer is at least $60 – 100+. When you buy the Klymit Kinetic vest it comes with a starter kit of a Klymitizer (the pump valve) a stuff sack, and 3 HotShot canisters of Argon which on average lasts 1 – 3 seasons. Then, when it is time to get more HotShot canisters, it comes in a 3 pack for $23.99 lasting another 1 – 3 seasons of skiing.
We heard of an interesting blog a guy did online of his own economic comparison. We can post links here so google search swittersb and Klymit then just use his search feature on his website to search for Klymit.
In the future Klymit will be offering other insulating gases such as Krypton, Xenon, and more. Join the Facebook fan page for Klymit to learn of upcoming products, discounts, events, how to get free gear, etc.
I hope this is helpful.
Awesome, definitely going to try one of these out sometime.
What I'd really like is a coat of a similar design, even if only the chest part was inflated. I'd be overjoyed if I could replace my bulky winter coat with a lighter but warmer klymit jacket.