Smart fabrics – also called e-textiles, smart garments or intelligent fabrics – have some type of electronic component embedded in them, such as a sensor, a battery, a light or an electronic chip. The purpose of smart fabrics is to provide the wearer with added value, such as improved performance or pleasure. Smart textiles are an important cog in the Internet of things (IoT).
In the medical world, smart textiles enable better tracking of patients inside and outside hospitals, through applications such as heart rate monitors, smart matrasses, smart uniforms, and detectors in carpets. They are used in other industries in applications such as RFID tags, fiber optic clothing, and heat detection components in firemen’s suits.
To enable efficient energy and data transfer, you need a reliable conductor that is safe and fine enough to be easily and discretely integrated into a fabric that is comfortable to wear. Bekaert conductive yarns are made of stainless steel filaments and other metal combinations. They maintain their performance and long flex-life even after numerous washings.