Wilmington, Delaware – A thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) layer is being used for a stretchable electronic ink for electronics embedded in clothing, according to the company.
The company’s innovation is a thin, form-fitting circuit that can be seamlessly fused with standard fabrics providing comfort and freedom in wearable technology, DuPont claims.
Michael Burrows, business development manager, told UTECH-polyurethane.com: “TPU has many enabling features for smart clothing.
The first is that it is currently used to fabricate advanced athletic and outdoor wear as a seam tape or compression and graphic features. The second is the elasticity.
“The third is freedom of design, as TPU can be cut to shape, it is compatible with a wide variety of fabrics, and there are many types of TPU that can be optimised for various purposes within a garment or other soft good.
“Using TPU as a substrate for a printed sensor and conductor network means that the electronics can be laminated directly to a standard clothing item in a single step, and this manufacturing compatibility is very compelling for the clothing industry.”
The company says its smart clothing can withstand up to 100 wash cycles.
These materials can be used in common manufacturing processes to manufacture smart clothing without significant investment, the company claims.
DuPont will offer a full material suite of conductors, encapsulants and sensors for wearable electronics, initially including: DuPont PE872 stretchable conductor, which is washable with encapsulation and DuPont PE772 stretchable, a washable dielectric encapsulant.