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Structured yarn coating for smart textiles

Country of Origin: Germany
Reference Number: TODE20190726001
Publication Date: 2 December 2019

Summary

A German university developed a spraying process for the structured coating of a yarn with functional materials in a continuous process. The substances applied in several layers can have different electronic or electrochemical properties and can be used in a variety of ways. The university offers a license agreement and/or a technical cooperation agreement.

Description

Electronic textiles currently still have a low degree of integration, i.e. commercial electronic components are usually attached to textile materials. A further disadvantage of yarn or filament based components is the increasing electrical resistance of the coatings with the running length. As a result, it has not yet been possible to implement extensive thread-based energy storage devices or sensors.

This invention by a German university describes a spraying process for the structured coating of a yarn with functional materials in a continuous process. The yarn passes through two coaxially arranged cylindrical stencils, the outer one of which has a slit-shaped opening and the inner one a helical one. By rotating the outer cylinder at a speed adapted to the yarn speed, a ring-shaped structure that is limited in an axial direction can be applied to the yarn surface. This is highly advantageous for the production of what are known as smart textiles, as electronic components can be produced directly at the level of a yarn. The substances applied in several layers can have different electronic or electrochemical properties and can be used in a variety of ways.

The process is suitable for the structured coating of yarns using sprayable coating agents or PVD to produce functional yarns or filaments for electronic or active textiles such as electroluminescence, energy storage or sensor technology in textiles. An application within medical technology is also possible as active substances can also be applied. It can be used as a stencil in yarn sputtering systems as an offset coating of two zones of different material can take place both on top of each other and next to each other.

The university would like to bring this invention to the market via a license agreement with companies active in e.g. medical textiles, geotextiles or intelligent textiles. If a further development of the application is desired and the know-how of the university is required, a technology cooperation agreement is also conceivable.
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Advantages and Innovations

This invention improves the current process for applying thread-based energy stores or sensors to textiles.  The invention makes it possible to apply electrodes for current collection at small intervals, which can be connected in a jacquard fabric, for example.

Other advantages are:
- Continuous coating
- Application of structures on yarns or filaments
- Several materials can be processed at the same time
- Use as a stencil
- Reduction in process costs

Stage Of Development

Concept stage

Stage Of Development Comment

A prototype is to be built and tested as part of a project.

Requested partner

The universityoffers interested companies a license agreement. This application can be used in medical technology, construction and geotextiles, in the manufacture of electronic and/or intelligent textiles. Companies from these areas would thus be potential partners.

Further developments and adaptation to an individual requirement in cooperation with interested companies is also conceivable under technical cooperation agreement. A potential partner can further develop or realize the project with or without the inventor at the university.

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