A computer science researcher from China is working with the University of Alberta to develop wearable sensors that will help athletes perform better and reduce injuries.

Shengjie Xiu, a 20-year-old undergraduate student at China’s Sun Yat-sen University, is spending three months in Edmonton to develop match box-sized sensors that can be embedded in athletic gear from boots to helmets.

Xiu, called a “rising global star,” is lending his expertise to develop an augmented reality program that will use the sensors to assess an athlete’s performance and help avoid injuries.

Coaches and doctors will be able to assess an athlete’s motion through the use of specialized 3D goggles and a custom software application that will collect data.

Wearable sensor technology University of Alberta

Xiu is working under the guidance of University of Alberta mechanical engineering assistant professor Dr. Hossein Rouhani, who runs the university’s neuromuscular control and biomechanics laboratory.

The technology is currently being developed and tested on athletes in the lab, with the wearables expected to be used by the university’s sports teams in the coming year.

Xiu is spending his summer at the University of Alberta as part of a unique internship program called Mitacs Globalink, which sees 1,200 international students tackle innovation challenges at 55 universities across Canada.

Wearable tech University of Alberta