Conductive Fibers from the University of Borås
Electrically conductive or electro-active fibers will be the key components of smart and interactive textiles, in a near future and will be used in areas such as medical, functional sportswear, energy and military applications. On 8 March, Mr. Tariq Bashir, doctoral student at the University of Borås, presented his doctoral thesis on polymer-based conductive fibers for smart textile applications.
New materials with new properties, smart textiles, are the future for new products. This is something that Tariq Bashir, doctoral student at the School of Engineering has noticed. He is now ready with his doctoral studies in the field of polymer-based conductive fibers and his fiber has already attracted the attention of various stakeholders.
-My research is about the development of conductive fibers using conductive polymer in conjunction with commercially available textile fibers, i.e.ordinary textiles, he explains.
Conductive polymers in textiles
Tariq Bashir has produced interesting results. Conducting fibers with different applications are already in use, but the conductivity is relatively low or the durability of the material is not the best. They get torn off or crack easily during weaving or knitting.
The electrical and mechanical properties of textile based conductive fibres depend on the application area. They should be sufficiently tough, pliable or hard as well as highly conductive. The method Tariq Bashir has applied is called CVD, Chemical Vapor Deposition. It consists of subjecting the textile material to vaporized monomers (link http://sv.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monomer) capable of forming the electrically conductive polymer. When the monomers condense they enclose the textile fibres like a thin film, and conjuncts to an electrically conductive polymer. This method shows that the fabrics have good electrically conductivity and mechanical properties. The textiles are flexible and feel like ordinary untreated textiles.
Several research groups interested
-These textile fibres have a bright future. Take, for example, solar panels, by using the layer by layer method, it will be possible to add different layers with various chemicals to give different characteristics, explains Mr. Tariq Bashir.
When it comes to solar panels Tariq has studied it only in a small scale. For larger scale studies, more resources and an increased research collaboration will be necessary in order to get further results. Mr.Tariq’s electrically conductive polymer fibres have already aroused curiosity. Umeå University looks at potential applications for his leading textiles for biofuel cells, University of Norrköping sees potential applications for thermal electricity, and Linköping University for knitted structure for biomimetic applications (biomimetics is about mimicking nature to design smart technologies) and the SP Swedish Technical Research Insititute is interested in the fibers to produce membranes for anti-static airfilters.
Title of the thesis: Conjugated Polymer-based Conductive Fibers for Smart Textile Applications
Comes from: Pakistan
Studies at the university of Borås: Started as a graduate student at the School of Engineering, University of Borås, 2009. Supervisor , Mikael Skrifvars, professor of polymer engineering, and co-supervisor Nils Krister Persson, teacher and researcher at the School of Textiles.
Has previously done: Studied basic level (BSc) inchemical engineering, and advanced level (MSc) in polymer and process engineering at the University of Engineering and Technology Lahore, Pakistan. Is on leave from a teaching position at the same university.
Other: Tariq Bashir was nominated for Young Talent Sjuhärad 2012 by the local News paper Borås Tidning and was among 50 nominees placed on 20th place as the newspaper's jury.