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Highly Conductive Material Paste for Screen-Printing on Textiles

The demand for garments with fully functioning textile-electronic integrated systems is increasing. The business of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is growing and textile providers are looking for ways to manufacture wearable measurement systems to monitor the health of workers in risky operations like fire fighting. The field of personalized health (p-Health) monitoring is growing around fitness, sports and healthcare, requiring also sensorized garments that enable long and proper monitoring.

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Unfortunately the integration of textile and electronics in products still facing manufacturing issues stopping the blooming of the sector. Combining printed electronics and smart textiles together have the potential to facilitate the manufacturing of textile-electronic integrated products to enable the proliferation of applications in the field of p-Health PPE and fitness. It is therefore necessary to develop and test new material combinations, which can be used as electronic components in textiles.

A key element impeding such combination is the lack of highly conductive and elastic paste formulations ready for screen-printing on textile fabrics. The goal of this pre-study is to evaluate and study available materials, which can be used to manufacture elastic textile-electronics. A further goal is to find a proper application methodology, which can be used on textile substrates.

The results will allow SMEs to develop new product/technology to add to their portfolio and increase their competitiveness. The unique competence at Printed Electronics Arena/Acreo and Smart Textiles/Högskolan i Borås can enhance Swedish SME´s competition in the emerging international market of Sensorized Garments for P-Health, fitness and PPE.