We Alaskans love our puffy jackets, and there’s definitely something to be said for the soft, squishy texture they provide — it’s like comfort food for the backcountry soul. But what if you could have the warmth of a puffy in a single thin layer that’s also waterproof?
That’s the idea behind the Oros Orion series, a set of slim, sleek and durable performance outerwear made with SolarCore, a proprietary version of the aerogel NASA uses to insulate space suits, shuttles, and the Mars rovers. Last year, Oros held a successful Kickstarter campaign to fund the production of an aerogel jacket; this year, they’re back to fund a second generation of jackets, plus beanies and gloves.
SolarCore has four-way stretch, 20,000 mm waterproofing, and it’s breathable — although there’s no word yet on just how breathable. That’s pretty much the sacred trifecta of qualities to look for in outdoor gear, and Oros’ demonstration of its durability and insulation is pretty freaking impressive: The Kickstarter video shows a jacket being doused with liquid nitrogen — with a person in it. The jacket’s exterior temperature measured -321 Fahrenheit, but it remained a comfortable 89 degrees inside.
The jackets’ slim design packs a lot of the features you’d expect from high-end outerwear for all things outdoors, including snowmachining, running and a course hiking; think pit zips, a powder skirt and a detachable hood. Check out their Kickstarter campaign if you want to know more– there are just a few days left.
Photos by Erica Zeidenburg for Oros