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ZSK/3E Smart Solutions | Reliable Mass Production of E-Textiles by Using Embroidery Technology

Steliyan Vasilev

Embroidery is a textile manufacturing technique that has its roots in historic hand-stitched garment design. However, with the invention of computers, this textile manufacturing technique has seen a resurgence due to its high levels of material optimization. Embroidery allows the textile engineer to place single fibers, yarns, fiber bundles, or even wires with high precision in a variable, predesigned geometry. Because of this high precision, embroidery is highly applicable for integrating functionality into textiles through textile sensors, actuators, or electrodes. Three types of embroidery technologies are commonly used and defined in the literature. These include chain and moss stitch embroidery, standard embroidery as well as tailored fiber, wire, or tube placement. Each of these methods can be utilized in varying ways for the mass production of smart textiles. The embroidery technology offers enormous possibilities for the automatic integration of conductive fibers and electronic components into textiles to create e-textiles. E-textiles are in development for decades but only a few products could make it to the market. The main reason for this lack of products on the market is the high production costs. Manual production steps increase the production costs and lead to high product costs. Furthermore, reproducibility cannot be guaranteed or manually created products. The high level of automation of the embroidery process finally allows the mass production of e-textiles


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