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Novel Crease and Wash-Resistant Electrically Conductive Inks for SMART Textile Applications

Hill, Sam Jordan (2015) Novel Crease and Wash-Resistant Electrically Conductive Inks for SMART Textile Applications. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Abstract

Due to the worldwide aging population, methods have been sought to improve the efficiency of health care services. It is envisaged that remote monitoring of patients would form part of the solution. Monitoring of patients would be via the use of functionalised undergarments with the required technology embedded within. There have been significant advances in flexible electronics but metal wires are still required for electrical interconnects which compromise the comfort that the garment offers when in contact with skin. Electrically conductive polymers are considered as viable replacements for these metal wires. Electrically conductive polymers can have high electrical conductivities but they can be brittle due to their inherent stiffness. From studies reported in this thesis, various routes to the synthesis of PEDOT, which would lend itself to function in crease and wash resistant conductive inks, were investigated. The task was highly challenging due to the confliction between high conductivity and structural rigidity of typical conductive molecules. A series of monomers, described within, were designed, synthesised and characterised. These monomers provide a foundation for further syntheses to the subsequent novel electrically conductive polymers. In order to assess potential challenges in the formulation of crease and wash resistant conductive inks based on conductive polymers, systems containing PEDOT:PSS were designed, prepared and characterised. It was found that the use of just PEDOT:PSS as the coating for cotton fabric provided an electrically conductive coating which was susceptible to degradation during creasing and washing. To overcome this challenge, a composite of a synthesised latex and PEDOT:PSS was devised which provided an electrically conductive coated cotton fabric with an electrically insulating surface. The electrical resistance could still be measured by incorporating electrodes prior to the application of the final latex layer. Encouragingly, this composite provided a formulation having very low electrical resistances pre- and post-wash.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Electrically conductive polymers; smart textiles
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences (Leeds) > School of Chemistry (Leeds)
Depositing User: Dr Sam J Hill
Date Deposited: 23 Mar 2016 13:35
Last Modified: 23 Mar 2016 13:35
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/12250

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