Fabrics to Generate Electricity for Simple Tasks

Uttu-Textiles // Issam Yousef // June 2013

The applications of smart textiles has expanded so far and it reached the field of renewable energy.  Professor David Carroll of Wake Forest University had developed a new technology, Power Felt, that charge your phone using the heat of your body.

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They put carbon nanotube in miniscule plastic fibres to look like a fabric.  The concept of this is that the heat will push the electrons away to the other side, which generate a thermal voltage.

It can be used to recharge your mobile phone.

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On the other hand, another team from South Carolina University used a normal T-shirt to create a shirt capable of storing energy.  The shirt was soaked in a solution of fluoride and dried then baked in high temperature oxygen free environment.  According to them, the fibres is converted to carbon in this process but still flexable and by using part of it as electrodes the shirt can be a capacitors to store electricity.

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Other team of students, in Denmark, from the university of Aalborg were able to create a smart fabric powered by nanotechnology to charge mobile phones and other devices by placing them on the fabric. The product was named Powertex in which power generators were integrated to give the fabric this ability.

powertex300

Many thinks the applications of this fabric will be helping us to be more mobile, where everything around us might be useful to support our portable technology.

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References

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2p_KWsBiqs&feature=player_embedded

http://elitedaily.com/news/world/power-fabric-charges-phone-hold/

http://www.sc.edu/news/newsarticle.php?nid=4062#.UcDh2uBhf1g

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-18781878

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2194308/The-power-fabric-charge-phone-hold-sit-it.html

http://www.innovationintextiles.com/students-design-fabric-for-charging-mobile-phones/

http://www.infoniac.com/hi-tech/latest-invention-powertex-fabric-charges-laptops-and-cell-phones.html

http://www.ubergizmo.com/2011/07/powertex-fabric-inductive-charging/

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