Wash-n-Wear Electronics being developed in Belgium

July 10, 2007

clipped from www.physorg.com
This stretchable thermometer can wrap around a patients forehead like a headband thanks to the horseshoe-shaped metal wires which can stretch up to twice their normal lengths. Credit: Jan Vanfleteren et al. (TFCG Microsystems Lab-Ghent University).

This stretchable thermometer can wrap around a patient’s forehead like a headband thanks to the horseshoe-shaped metal wires, which can stretch up to twice their normal lengths.

Researchers from Belgium have devised a plan for making headway into the area of flexible, washable electronics. These integrated electronics, which could be incorporated into clothing and biomedical applications, require all connections between components to stretch like rubber bands while maintaining their conductivity.

A goal of the SWEET project is to design electronics that are not only elastic, but also washable, as demonstrated by this water-resistant, stretchable LED circuit.

“For biomedical and textile applications, the comfort of the user will be enhanced if the electronic circuits are not only flexible, but also elastic,” the researchers explained in their study.

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